purdah

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search

English[edit]

Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Etymology[edit]

From Urdu پردہ (parda), and its source, Persian پرده (parda, curtain).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈpəːdɑː/, /ˈpəːdə/

Noun[edit]

purdah (plural purdahs)

  1. (chiefly South Asia) A curtain, especially as used to conceal and divide women from men and strangers in some Hindu or Muslim traditions. [from 17th c.]
    • 1888, Rudyard Kipling, ‘A Wayside Comedy’, Under the Deodars, Folio Society 2005, p. 34:
      As she passed through the dining-room, she heard, behind the purdah that cloaked the drawing-room door, her husband's voice [...].
    • 1924, EM Forster, A Passage to India, Penguin 2005, p. 11:
      ‘Come and see my wife a little then,’ said Hamidullah, and they spent twenty minutes behind the purdah.
  2. (rare, obsolete) A striped cotton cloth which is used to make curtains. [19th c.]
  3. The state or system of social gender seclusion in some Muslim or Hindu communities. [from 19th c.]
  4. A long veil, or other all-enveloping clothing, worn by women in some Muslim societies. [from 20th c.]
  5. (figuratively) Secrecy, isolation. [from 20th c.]

Related terms[edit]

Anagrams[edit]