It seems to me that many Arabic female names are ending in -a: Fatima, Yamina, Aisha, Aziza. Is this a modern innovation imported from Indo-European languages or a native feature? Also I wonder about nouns and country names like say Jamahiriya, Arabiya etc.
Semitic nouns originally had three cases:nominative,objective,possessive/oblique; and many feminine nouns took a -ta ending, which shortened to -a@(glottal stop or the like) and then simply to -a(long, and often written as -ah).so, we might illustrate all of the above as follows, using the sus/horse root:-
masculine feminine horse mare
nominative - horse/mare as subject. sus.u. sus.at.u
objective. horse/mare as object/extent/direction. sus.a.(ma/m) sus.at.a(ma/m)
possessive - of horse/mare; horse's/mare's} sus.i. sus.at.i oblique - to/by/from/with/etc. horse/mare}