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Yodh (also spelled yud, yod, jod, or jodh) is the tenth letter of the Semitic abjads, including Phoenician Yōd (File:Phoenician_yodh.svg|10px), Hebrew Yōd , Aramaic Yodh (File:Yod.svg|10 px), Syriac Yōḏ ܝ, and Arabic {{transl|ar|DIN|Yāʾ}} . Its sound value is {{IPAslink|j}} in all languages for which it is used; in many languages, it also serves as a long vowel, representing {{IPAslink|i|iː}}.The Phoenician letter gave rise to the Greek Iota (Ι),Victor Parker, A History of Greece, 1300 to 30 BC, (John Wiley & Sons, 2014), 67. Latin I, J, Cyrillic І, Coptic iauda (Ⲓ) and Gothic eis (File:Gothic_letter_eis.svg|4px).


Yodh is originated from a pictograph of a “hand” that ultimately derives from Proto-Semitic (:wikt:Appendix:Proto-Semitic/yad-|*yad-). It may be related to the Egyptian hieroglyph of an “arm” or “hand” D36

Arabic yāʼ

, {{IPAblink|iː}}|unicode=|alphanumber=4|number=|usageperiod=|children=|equivalents=|associates=|direction=Right-to-left}}The letter is named {{transl|ar|ALA|yāʼ}} (). It is written in several ways depending on its position in the word:{{Arabic alphabet shapes|ي}}It is pronounced in four ways:
  • As a consonant, it is pronounced as a palatal approximant {{IPA|/j/}}, typically at the beginnings of words in front of short or long vowels.
  • A long {{IPA|/iː/}} usually in the middle or end of words. In this case it has no diacritic, but could be marked with a kasra in the preceding letter in some traditions.
  • A long {{IPA|/eː/}} In many dialects, as a result of the monophthongization that the diphthong {{IPA|/aj/}} underwent in most words.
  • A part of a diphthong, {{IPA|/aj/}}. Then, it has no diacritic but could be marked with a sukun in some traditions. The preceding consonant could have no diacritic or have {{transl|ar|DIN|fatḥa}} sign, hinting to the first vowel in the diphthong, i.e. {{IPA|/a/}}.
As a vowel, yāʾ can serve as the "seat" of the hamza: Yāʾ serves several functions in the Arabic language. Yāʾ as a prefix is the marker for a singular imperfective verb, as in {{transl|ar|DIN|yaktub}} "he writes" from the root K-T-B ("write, writing"). Yāʾ with a shadda is particularly used to turn a noun into an adjective, called a nisbah (). For instance, {{transl|ar|DIN|Miṣr}} (Egypt) → Miṣriyy (Egyptian). The transformation can be more abstract; for instance, mawḍūʿ (matter, object) → mawḍūʿiyy ((wikt:objectivity|objective)). Still other uses of this function can be a bit further from the root: ishtirāk (cooperation) → ishtirākiyy (socialist). The common pronunciation of the final {{IPA|/-ijj/}} is most often pronounced as {{IPA-ar|i|}} or {{IPA-ar|iː|}}.A form similar to but distinguished from yāʾ is the {{transl|ar|DIN|ʾalif maqṣūrah}} () "limited/restricted alif", with the form . It indicates a final long {{IPA|/aː/}}.In Egypt, Sudan and sometimes the Maghreb, the final form is always (without dots), both in handwriting and in print, representing both final {{IPA|/-iː/}} and {{IPA|/-aː/}}. representing final {{IPA|/-aː/}} (DIN 31635 transliteration: {{transl|ar|DIN|ā}}) is less likely to occur in Modern Standard Arabic. In this case, it is commonly known as, especially in Egypt, {{transl|ar|DIN|ʾalif layyinah}} {{IPA-arz|ˈʔælef læjˈjenæ|}}. In Egypt, it is always short {{IPA|[-æ, -ɑ]}} if used in Egyptian Arabic and most commonly short in Modern Standard Arabic, as well.

Alif maqṣūrah

{{Anchor|alifmaqsura}}The {{transl|ar|ALA|alif maqṣūrah}} (, 'limited/restricted alif'), commonly known in Egypt as {{transl|ar|ALA|alif layyinah}} (, 'flexible alif'), looks like a dotless {{transl|ar|ALA|yā’}} (final ) and may appear only at the end of a word. Although it looks different from a regular alif, it represents the same sound {{IPA|/aː/}}, often realized as a short vowel. When it is written, {{transl|ar|ALA|alif maqṣūrah}} is indistinguishable from final Persian ye or Arabic {{transl|ar|ALA|yā’}} as it is written in Egypt, Sudan and sometimes elsewhere. The letter is transliterated as {{transl|ar|ALA|y}} in Kazakh. {{transl|ar|ALA|Alif maqsurah}} is transliterated as {{transl|ar|ALA|á}} in ALA-LC, {{transl|ar|DIN|ā}} in DIN 31635, {{transl|ar|ISO|à}} in ISO 233-2, and {{transl|ar|ISO|ỳ}} in ISO 233.In Arabic, Alif maqsurah is not used initially or medially, and it is not joinable initially or medially in all fonts. However, the letter is used initially and medially in the Uyghur Arabic alphabet and the Arabic-based Kyrgyz alphabet: ({{script/Arabic|ىـ ـىـ}}).{{Arabic alphabet shapes|ى}}

Perso-Arabic ye

{{Arabic script sidebar|Pashto|nav=no}}{{Arabic script sidebar|Persian|nav=no}}In the Persian alphabet, the letter is generally called ye following Persian-language custom. In its final form, the letter does not have dots (), much like the Arabic {{transl|ar|DIN|(Aleph#Alif maqṣūrah: ى|Alif maqṣūrah)}} or, more to the point, much like the custom in Egypt, Sudan and sometimes Maghreb. On account of this difference, Perso-Arabic ye is located at a different Unicode code point than both of the standard Arabic letters. In computers, the Persian version of the letter automatically appears with two dots initially and medially: ().{{Arabic alphabet shapes|ی}}In Kashmiri, it uses a ring instead from ي of a dots below ({{script/Arabic|ؠ ؠـ ـؠـ ـؠ}}).{{Arabic alphabet shapes|ؠ}}

Returned yāʾ

In different calligraphic styles like the Hijazi script, Kufic, and Nastaʿlīq script, a final yāʾ might have a particular shape with the descender turned to the right ({{Nastaliq|ـے}}), called al-yāʾ al-mardūdah/al-rājiʿah ("returned, recurred yāʾ"),BOOK, Gacek, Adam, The Arabic manuscript tradition: a glossary of technical terms and bibliography: supplement, 2008, Brill, Leiden, 9004165401, 29,weblink either with two dots or without them.BOOK, Yūsofī, Ḡolām-Ḥosayn, Encyclopædia Iranica, 1990, IV, 680–704,weblink Calligraphy, In Urdu this is called baṛī ye ("big ye"), but is an independent letter used for /ɛː, eː/ and differs from the basic ye (choṭī ye, "little ye"). For this reason the letter has its own code point in Unicode. Nevertheless, its initial and medial forms are not different from the other ye (practically baṛī ye is not used in these positions).{{Arabic alphabet shapes|ے}}

Hebrew Yud {|classwikitable style"text-align:center;"

!colspan=5|Orthographic variants!colspan=3|Various print fonts!rowspan=2|CursiveHebrew!rowspan=2|Rashiscript!|Serif !! Sans-serif !! Monospaced×™×™×™(File:Hebrew letter Yud handwriting.svg|38px)(File:Hebrew letter Yud Rashi.png|45px)Hebrew spelling: ;{{dead link|date=July 2016 |bot=InternetArchiveBot |fix-attempted=yes }} colloquial


In both Biblical and modern Hebrew, Yud represents a palatal approximant ({{IPAblink|j}}). As a mater lectionis, it represents the vowel {{IPAblink|i}}. At the end of words with a vowel or when marked with a sh'va nach, it represents the formation of a diphthong, such as {{IPA|/ei/}}, {{IPA|/ai/}}, or {{IPA|/oi/}}.


In gematria, Yud represents the number ten.As a prefix, it designates the third person singular (or plural, with a Vav as a suffix) in the future tense.As a suffix, it indicates first person singular possessive; av (father) becomes avi (my father)."Yod" in the Hebrew language signifies iodine. Iodine is also called يود yod in Arabic.

In religion

Two Yuds in a row designate the name of God Adonai and in pointed texts are written with the vowels of Adonai; this is done as well with the Tetragrammaton.As Yud is the smallest letter, much kabbalistic and mystical significance is attached to it. According to the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus mentioned it during the Antithesis of the Law, when he says: "One jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." Jot, or iota, refers to the letter Yud; it was often overlooked by scribes because of its size and position as a mater lectionis. In modern Hebrew, the phrase "tip of the Yud" refers to a small and insignificant thing, and someone who "worries about the tip of a Yud" is someone who is picky and meticulous about small details.Much kabbalistic and mystical significance is also attached to it because of its gematria value as ten, which is an important number in Judaism, and its place in the name of


In Yiddish,BOOK, Weinreich, Uriel, 1992, College Yiddish, New York, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, 27–8, Uriel Weinreich, the letter yud is used for several orthographic purposes in native words:
  • Alone, a single yud ×™ may represent the vowel {{IPAblink|i}} or the consonant {{IPAblink|j}}. When adjacent to another vowel, or another yud, {{IPAblink|i}} may be distinguished from {{IPAblink|j}} by the addition of a dot below. Thus the word Yidish 'Yiddish' is spelled ייִדיש. The first yud represents [{{IPA|j}}]; the second yud represents [{{IPA|i}}] and is distinguished from the adjacent [{{IPA|j}}] by a dot; the third yud represents [{{IPA|i}}] as well, but no dot is necessary.
  • The digraph ×™×™, consisting of two yuds, represents the diphthong [{{IPA|ej}}].
  • A pair of yuds with a horizontal line (pasekh) under them, ײַ, represents the diphthong [{{IPA|aj}}] in standard Yiddish.
  • The digraph consisting of a vov followed by a yud, וי, represents the diphthong [{{IPA|oj}}].
Loanwords from Hebrew or Aramaic in Yiddish are spelled as they are in their language of origin.

Character encodings

{{charmapname1=Hebrew Letter Yodname2=Arabic Letter Yehname3=Persian Letter Yename4=Syriac Letter Yudhname5=Samaritan Letter Yut}}{{charmapname1=Ugaritic Letter Yodname2=Imperial Aramaic Letter Yodhname3=Phoenician Letter Yod}}

See also



External links

{{commons category|×™}}{{Hebrew language}}{{Arabic language}}{{Northwest Semitic abjad}}

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