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Zqapa vs. Pthakha, any difference?
In modern Hebrew there is no difference between Kamatz and Patach, as far as the sound they make is concerned. Except for Kamatz Katan but that's another story.

Is that the case too in Eastern Aramaic? Is there no difference in sound between Zqapa and Pthakha? The grammars I am looking at claim there is, but listening to the natives, I can not hear the difference. Maybe Pthakha is a tad shorter but the actual sound is the same to my ear. See Alaha, Hakhana, etc.
According to grammars, Pthaka is like O in American DOT and Zqapa is like A in FATHER. I could never hear that sound (o of dot) though in any audio I listened to.
Both in the sample Paul put up at <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""></a><!-- m --> and <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ... ture=watch</a><!-- m -->

There is this site which disappeared <!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ...</a><!-- m -->. In there they use A of MAN for Pthakha, but according to George Kirag's Primer that's how the Western pronunciation is.
By the way, I find that site really helpful, it's a pity it has been taken offline. But one can still get it from
Depends on a lot of things and is quite different between subdialects. Zqafa tends to be more rounded where pthakha tends to be unrounded. In dialects like Western Classical Syriac and Turoyo, of course, zqafa not only was very rounded, it fell back in the throat to an "o" sound. In Galilean, the equivalents of zqafa and pthakha merged, leaving only one a-class vowel that in some cases swapped with shwa depending on emphasis.


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