AskDefine | Define sheikh

Dictionary Definition

sheikh n : the leader of an Arab village or family [syn: sheik, tribal sheik, tribal sheikh, Arab chief]

User Contributed Dictionary


Alternative spellings


  1. Alternate spelling of sheik.

Extensive Definition

Sheikh, also rendered as Sheik, Cheikh, Shaikh, and other variants (Arabic: , shaykh; pl. shuyūkh), is a word or honorific term in the Arabic language that literally means "elder". It is commonly used to designate an elder of a tribe, a lord, a revered wise man, or an Islamic scholar. Although the title generally refers to a male person, there existed in history also a very small number of female sheikhs.
It also refers to a man over 40 or 50 years old generally or a Muslim who is a student of knowledge. Whilst even a new Muslim can be called a Sheikh if he is diligent in seeking the knowledge of Islam based upon the Quran and authentic Sunnah, he can be referred to as such to those he can teach. And usually a person is known as a Sheikh when they have completed their undergraduate university studies in Islamic studies and are trained in giving lectures.
The word Sheikh is not to be confused with an Alim, pl. Ulema, (a learned person in Islam, a scholar), Mawlawi, Mawlana, Muhaddith, Faqih, Qadi, or Mufti.


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sheikh in Arabic: شیخ
sheikh in Catalan: Xeic
sheikh in Czech: Šejk
sheikh in Danish: Sheik
sheikh in German: Scheich
sheikh in Spanish: Jeque
sheikh in Esperanto: Ŝejko
sheikh in Persian: شیخ
sheikh in French: Cheïkh
sheikh in Indonesian: Syekh
sheikh in Italian: Sceicco
sheikh in Hebrew: שייח'
sheikh in Dutch: Sjeik
sheikh in Japanese: シャイフ
sheikh in Polish: Szejk
sheikh in Portuguese: Xeque (título)
sheikh in Romanian: Şeic
sheikh in Russian: Шейх
sheikh in Sinhala: شیخ
sheikh in Slovenian: Šejk
sheikh in Serbian: Шеик
sheikh in Finnish: Šeikki
sheikh in Swedish: Schejk
sheikh in Ukrainian: Шейх
sheikh in Urdu: شیخ
sheikh in Chinese: 谢赫 (称号)

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Dalai Lama, Holy Roman Emperor, Inca, Kaiser, Muslim rulers, Prinz, abdal, ardri, atheling, bey, cacique, caesar, cham, crown prince, czar, dervish, emir, fakir, hajji, heir apparent, heir presumptive, imam, kaid, khan, king, knez, mikado, mirza, muezzin, mufti, mullah, murshid, negus, padishah, pendragon, pharaoh, prince, prince consort, prince regent, princeling, princes of India, qadi, rig, sachem, sagamore, santon, shah, shahzada, sherif, shogun, tenno, tycoon
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