Ḫāʾ

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Ḫāʾ (خ, transliterated as (DIN-31635), (Hans Wehr), kh (ALA-LC) or (ISO 233)), is one of the six letters the Arabic alphabet added to the twenty-two inherited from the Phoenician alphabet (the others being ṯāʼ, ḏāl, ḍād, ẓāʼ, ġayn). It is based on the ḥāʾ  ح. It represents the sound [x] or [χ] in Modern Standard Arabic. The pronunciation of خ is very similar to German, Scottish, and Polish unpalatalised "ch", Russian х (Cyrillic Kha), and Spanish "j". In name and shape, it is a variant of ḥāʾ. South Semitic also kept the phoneme separate, and it appears as South Arabian ḫ, Ge'ez Ḫarm . Its numerical value is 600 (see Abjad numerals).

When representing this sound in transliteration of Arabic into Hebrew, it is written as ח׳.

The most common transliteration in English is "kh", e.g. Khartoum (الخرطوم al-Kharṭūm), sheikh (شيخ).

Ḫāʾ is written is several ways depending in its position in the word:


Position in word: Isolated Final Medial Initial
Glyph form: خ ـخ ـخـ خـ

Character encodings[edit]

Character خ
Unicode name ARABIC LETTER KHAH
Encodings decimal hex
Unicode 1582 U+062E
UTF-8 216 174 D8 AE
Numeric character reference خ خ

See also[edit]