almah

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Ultimately from Arabic عالمة (‘ālima, singer), originally a feminine adjective meaning ‘learned, knowledgeable’, from علم (‘alima, to know).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

almah (plural almahs or almah)

  1. An Egyptian singer or dancing-girl used for entertainment; a dancing-girl, a prostitute. [from 18th c.]
    • 1998, Catherine Gillivray, translating Hélène Cixous, Firstdays of the Year, Minnesota 1998, p. 157:
      Nostalgia is almah, the Arab dancing girl. She tells me stories of the drowned, the deadest of this world's dead.

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