purdah


purdah
/perr"deuh/, n. (in India, Pakistan, etc.)
1. the seclusion of women from the sight of men or strangers, practiced by some Muslims and Hindus.
2. a screen, curtain, or veil used for this purpose.
Also, purda, pardah.
[1790-1800; < Hindi, Urdu pardah curtain < Pers]

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Seclusion of women from public observation by means of concealing clothing (including the veil) and walled enclosures as well as screens and curtains within the home.

The custom seems to have originated in Persia and was adopted by Muslims during the Arab conquest of what is now Iraq in the 7th century. The Muslim domination of northern India led to its adoption by the Hindu upper classes, but it was discarded by Hindus after the end of British rule in India. The custom of purdah still continues in many Islamic countries.

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▪ Islamic custom
also spelled  Pardah , Hindi  Parda (“screen,” or “veil”) 

      practice that was inaugurated by Muslims and later adopted by various Hindus, especially in India, and that involves the seclusion of women from public observation by means of concealing clothing (including the veil) and by the use of high-walled enclosures, screens, and curtains within the home.

      The practice of purdah is said to have originated in the Persian culture and to have been acquired by the Muslims during the Arab conquest of what is now Iraq in the 7th century AD. Muslim domination of northern India in turn influenced the practice of Hinduism, and purdah became usual among the Hindu upper classes of northern India. During the British hegemony in India, purdah observance was strictly adhered to and widespread among the highly conscious Muslim minority. Since then, purdah has largely disappeared in Hindu practice, though the seclusion and veiling of women is practiced to a greater or lesser degree in many Islāmic countries. See also harem.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Purdah — Pur dah, n. [Per. parda a curtain.] A curtain or screen; also, a cotton fabric in blue and white stripes, used for curtains. McElrath. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Purdah — ist die: englische Bezeichnung für Parda, die in Pakistan und Indien verbreitete Form der islamischen Verschleierung der Frau die ehemalige Bezeichnung des britischen Panzers Tetrarch aus dem 2. Weltkrieg in Großbritannien die Bezeichnung für… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • purdah — 1800, from Urdu and Persian pardah “veil, curtain.” …   Etymology dictionary

  • purdah — ► NOUN ▪ the practice in certain Muslim and Hindu societies of screening women from men or strangers by means of a curtain or all enveloping clothes. ORIGIN from Urdu and Persian, veil, curtain …   English terms dictionary

  • purdah — [pʉr′də] n. [Urdu & Hindi pardah, veil < Pers] 1. the practice among some Hindus and Muslims of secluding or hiding women from strangers 2. a curtain or partition used for this 3. the section of a house reserved primarily for women …   English World dictionary

  • Purdah — Deux femmes afghanes portant le tchadri traditionnel. Purdah ou Pardaa (urdu : پردہ, hindi : पर्दा signifiant littéralement « rideau ») désigne une pratique empêchant les hommes de voir les femmes. Le purdah prend deux… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Purdah — This article is about the practice of preventing men from seeing women. See also Budget purdah. Purdah or Pardaa (Persian: پرده, Urdu: پردہ, Hindi: पर्दा, literally meaning curtain ) is the practice of preventing men from seeing women. This takes …   Wikipedia

  • purdah — pur|dah [ˈpə:də, da: US ˈpə:r ] n [U] [Date: 1800 1900; : Hindi; Origin: parda screen, veil ] 1.) the custom in some Muslim and Hindu societies in which women stay indoors or cover their faces so that men cannot see them in purdah ▪ The bride… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • purdah — pur|dah [ pɜrdə ] noun uncount the practice among some Muslims and Hindus of keeping women apart, and having them wear clothing that covers their bodies completely when they go out: His future wife would observe purdah. in purdah: a woman in… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • purdah — UK [ˈpɜː(r)də] / US [ˈpɜrdə] noun [uncountable] 1) the practice among some Muslims and Hindus of keeping women apart, and having them wear clothing that covers their bodies completely when they go out His future wife would observe purdah. in… …   English dictionary


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