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See also: دین


Etymology 1[edit]

A historically conflated term derived from multiple layers of phono-semantic matching:

  • Initially stemming from Proto-Semitic *dVn- (obligated conduct; decisions of morality or ethics, judgement, decree, ruling), where in Arabia it took specifically the foremost connotation of obligations, duty, what is expected or owed; hence also the sense of a monetary debt along with that which is owed to society ethically.
  • Cognate terms in other Semitic languages also came with a more developed legal sense, rulings, a set of obligations, a law code; these senses were bolstered semantically borrowing from Aramaic דִּינָא(dīnā), Classical Syriac ܕܺܝܢܳܐ(dīnā, judgement),Hebrew דִּין(din), Ge'ez ደይን (däyn, judgement), which likely had their specified development from Akkadian 𒁲𒉡 (di-nu /dēnu, dīnu/, judgement, decision, verdict; legal practice, article of law, precedent; lawsuit, claim, legal case; court conduct, procedures, rule of law). Another possible layer still is the term Sumerian 𒁲 (/did/, lawsuit, trial; legal decision) which is a term of uncertain origins; potentially an early Akkadian borrowing, at least semantically, or natively derived from 𒁲 (/di/, to speak), a form of 𒅗 (dug4 /dug/, to speak, talk, say; to order, to negotiate).
  • The sense of religious creed or a system of religious rules is borrowed from Middle Persian [Book Pahlavi needed] (dyn' /dēn/), which developed from Old Persian 𐎭𐎠𐎡𐎴 (d-a-i-n /*daina-/, a religious-informed or conscientious way of life), which underwent influence from Akkadian when the Achaemenid Empire incorporated its Semitic kingdoms. Developing also from Younger Avestan 𐬛𐬉𐬥𐬁(dēnā), a term already having a predecessor with a religious sense in Avestan 𐬛𐬀𐬉𐬥𐬁(daēnā), which is possibly akin to Sanskrit ध्यान (dhyāna), whence zen. This possibly derives in part under the influence of Elamite 𒁲𒂊𒉡 (/dēn/), itself potentially developing from the Akkadian legal sense; religious obligation to deities, the system or conduct of the priesthood regarding divinities.
  • The Qurʾān and later Islamic scholarship adds an additional layer of phono-semantic matching, melding the native significances with the connotations imparted by the languages of their neighbors, both from the Semitic family and those not.



دِين (dīnm (plural أَدْيَان(ʾadyān))

  1. verbal noun of دَانَ(dāna, to be religious) (form I)
  2. (countable, uncountable) religion, creed, credo, faith, conviction, belief, tenet, rite
  3. (uncountable, verbal noun) conformism, conformance, conformity, compliance, fealty, obedience; God-fearingness, godliness, religiosity, devoutness
  4. law, obligations, duty
  5. custom, habit
    لَيْسَ هٰذَا مِنْ دِينِي وَلَا دَيْدَنِي
    laysa hāḏā min dīnī walā daydanī
    This is not according to my habit nor to my wont.
  6. judgement, decision, ruling
    1. (rare) requital, compensation, indemnification
    2. (rare) credit, obligation, account, falling due of a debt
Derived terms[edit]
Related terms[edit]
  • Maltese: din
  • Azerbaijani: din
  • Avar: дин (din)
  • Bashkir: дин (din)
  • Chechen: дин (din)
  • Chuvash: тӗн (tĕn)
  • Crimean Tatar: din
  • Hindustani:
    Hindi: दीन (dīn)
    Urdu: دین(dīn)
  • Indonesian: din
  • Kurdish:
    Northern Kurdish: dîn
    Central Kurdish: دین(dîn)
  • Kazakh: дін (din)
  • Kyrgyz: дин (din)
  • Malay: din
  • Pashto: دين(din)
  • Ossetian: дин (din)
  • Santali: ᱫᱤᱱ (din)
  • Swahili: dini
  • Tatar: дин (din)
  • Turkish: din
  • Turkmen: din
  • Uyghur: دىن(din)
  • Uzbek: din

Etymology 2[edit]

From the verb دَانَ(dāna, to hold religion).



دَيِّن (dayyin) (feminine دَيِّنَة(dayyina), masculine plural دَيِّنُونَ(dayyinūna), feminine plural دَيِّنَات(dayyināt))

  1. religious, pious, godly, God-fearing, devout

Etymology 3[edit]

Causative of the verb دَانَ(dāna, to be a debtor) from the د ي ن(d-y-n).



دَيَّنَ (dayyana) II, non-past يُدَيِّنُ‎‎ (yudayyinu)

  1. to loan, to lend, to advance
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 4[edit]

From the root د ي ن(d-y-n).



دَيْن (daynm (plural دُيُون(duyūn) or أَدْيُن(ʾadyun))

  1. verbal noun of دَانَ(dāna) (form I)
  2. debt, debit, liability, pecuniary, obligation, financial claim
    Synonyms: سَلَف(salaf), قَرْض(qarḍ)

Etymology 5[edit]

See the etymology of the main entry.



دِينَ (dīna) (form I)

  1. third-person masculine singular past passive of دَانَ(dāna)


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  • Cheung, Johnny (2017) On the (Middle) Iranian borrowings in Qurʾānic (and pre-Islamic) Arabic[1], Leiden: Leiden University, page 9
  • Corriente, Federico (2005) , “دين”, in Diccionario avanzado árabe (in Spanish), volume I, 2nd edition, Barcelona: Herder, page 387
  • Dozy, Reinhart Pieter Anne (1881) , “دين”, in Supplément aux dictionnaires arabes (in French), volume 1, Leiden: E. J. Brill, page 482
  • Jeffery, Arthur (1938) , “دِين”, in The Foreign Vocabulary of the Qurʾān (Gaekwad’s Oriental Series; 79), Baroda: Oriental Institute, pages 131 seqq.
  • Freytag, Georg (1833) , “دين”, in Lexicon arabico-latinum praesertim ex Djeuharii Firuzabadiique et aliorum Arabum operibus adhibitis Golii quoque et aliorum libris confectum (in Latin), volume 2, Halle: C. A. Schwetschke, page 76–77
  • Kazimirski, Albin de Biberstein (1860) , “دين”, in Dictionnaire arabe-français contenant toutes les racines de la langue arabe, leurs dérivés, tant dans l’idiome vulgaire que dans l’idiome littéral, ainsi que les dialectes d’Alger et de Maroc (in French), volume 1, Paris: Maisonneuve et Cie, page 758
  • Lane, Edward William (1863) , “دين”, in Arabic-English Lexicon, London: Williams & Norgate, pages 943–944
  • Leslau, Wolf (1991) , “የነደ”, in Comparative Dictionary of Geʿez (Classical Ethiopic), 2nd edition, Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, →ISBN, page 146
  • Steingass, Francis Joseph (1884) , “دين”, in The Student's Arabic–English Dictionary[2], London: W.H. Allen, pages 381–382
  • Wahrmund, Adolf (1887) , “دين”, in Handwörterbuch der neu-arabischen und deutschen Sprache (in German), volume 1, Gießen: J. Ricker’sche Buchhandlung, page 698
  • Wehr, Hans (1979) , “دين”, in J. Milton Cowan, editor, A Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic, 4th edition, Ithaca, NY: Spoken Language Services, →ISBN, page 353
  • Wehr, Hans; Kropfitsch, Lorenz (1985) , “دين”, in Arabisches Wörterbuch für die Schriftsprache der Gegenwart (in German), 5th edition, Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, published 2011, →ISBN, page 423