Substitute (Badal)

Arabic Grammar - Badal

Source for above : ARIC Arabic Class Notes – Book 1

arabic grammar badal arabic grammar badal

Source for the above: Image extracted from the book : Book 1 – Grammar Book

Difference between “This book” and “This is a book” (Seq # 60)

Let us understand it as below. If somebody says in English “this” then it does not convey you a complete message. The front person will ask you, what do you mean ? The term “this” can be anything. It can be computer, table, house etc.

If somebody says again in English for example “this book”, then also it is not providing us the complete explanation about the book except that the term “book” has just substituted the term “this”. Hence the phrase “this book” is also not a complete sentence. It is not giving any complete idea or information about the object “book”.

Upon understanding it in English let us come to Arabic. The term “this” is هذا  in the Arabic language. هذا  is مَرفُوعٌ  and definite by default. Book is substituting هذا. So book should also have same characteristics of هذا. So “this book” translates in the Arabic as

 هذا الْــكِــتَــابُ

Here الْــكِــتَــابُ is termed as بَدَلْ  and هذا  is termed as .مُبْدَلْ مِنْهُ Badal should match all the characteristics of Mubdal Minu.

Now let us understand “This is a book”. This statement is a complete sentence. Its translation is as below.

 هذا كِــتَــابٌ

In the above statement هَذا is the subject and كِــتَــابٌ is the single word predicate.


  • State TRUE or FALSE: Read the verse Quran (18:6). هَذا الحَدِيْثِ is a Badal- Mubdal Minhu construction.
  • State TRUE or FALSE: Read the verse Quran (18:54). هَذا الْقُرأَنِ is Badal-Mubdal Minhu construction.
  • State TRUE or FALSE: The phrase ذلك الْكِتَابُ (That book) is not a Badal-Mubdal Minhu construction.

Answers to Exercise

Difference between “This book” and “This is a book” (Seq # 60) T, T, F

Source for the above: From the notes  Trying to understand the Arabic Language by Mohammed Aijaz