Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition, Glossary and Index of Terms

Get access Subject: Middle East and Islamic Studies
Edited by: P.J. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs
Assisted by C. Ott, under the patronage of the International Union of Acadamies

Glossary and Index of Terms treats the technical terms in Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Urdu and other languages or dialects of the Islamic world. As an index, it is of immeasurable importance, in particular for the many terms which are not given an entry but are discussed in the course of an article; and as glossary it is an invaluable source of information for both non-specialist, who is given an insight into the varied and rich vocabulary of Islam, and the specialist, who may discover surprising new contexts in which a term is used.

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naʿām

(71 words)

naʿām (A, P us̲h̲turmug̲h̲, T devekus̲h̲u, both ‘camel-bird’) : in zoology, a collective noun denoting the ostrich ( S…

nabʿ

(25 words)

nabʿ (A) : in botany, Grewia tenax, a wood from which the pre-Islamic Arabs made their bows, still used to…

nāb

(21 words)

nāb (A, pl. niyāb) : in anatomy, the canine tooth. Imāla; Mak̲h̲ārid̲j̲ al-Ḥurūf In Persian, a measuring rod. D̲h…

nabaʾ

(28 words)

nabaʾ (A) : a Qurʾānic term for ‘news, announcement’, which meaning ~ has retained until today; also…

nabaʿ

(10 words)

nabaʿ (A) : a shallow water source. Abīward

nabāt

(19 words)

nabāt (A) : plants. Naʿām; and Sukkar nabātī a strong yellow-coloured paper preferred by Cairo printers. Kāg̲h̲ad

nabaṭī

(18 words)

nabaṭī (A) : in literature, the name given to the popular vernacular poetry of Arabia. Nabaṭ

nabaz

(24 words)

nabaz (A, pl. anbāz) : in onomastics, an unpleasant sobriquet, Laḳab, such as that of Marwān I ( al-ḥimār ‘the ass’). …

nabbās̲h̲

(32 words)

nabbās̲h̲ (A) : lit. burrower, excavator; in mediaeval Islam, a category of thieves, said to be well…

nabī

(33 words)

nabī (A, pl. nabiyyūn) : prophet. When used in the Qurʾān, ~ seems to occur only in Medinan passages an…

nabīd̲h̲

(72 words)

nabīd̲h̲ (A) : intoxicating drinks, several kinds of which were produced in early Arabia, such as mizr (from barley;…

nābita

(28 words)

nābita (A) : a term of classical Arabic meaning ‘rising generation’, but one which today has acquire…

nabḳ

(14 words)

nabḳ (A) : in botany, the fruit of the Sidr tree. Sidr

nabl

(30 words)

nabl (A) : in archery, a wooden or Arab arrow, one of the three main words denoting the arrow, the others being Sahm and nus…

nad̲h̲īr

(59 words)

nad̲h̲īr (A, pl. nud̲h̲ur) : ‘warner’; a Qurʾānic term, whose opposite is bas̲h̲īr, mubas̲h̲s̲h̲ir. Both ~ and bas̲h̲…

nad̲h̲r

(132 words)

nad̲h̲r (A, pl. nud̲h̲ūr) : ‘vow’, a procedure which was taken over into Islam from the pre-Islamic Ara…

nadīm

(54 words)

nadīm (A, pl. nidām, nudamāʾ, nudmān) : drinking companion, and, by extension, friend, courtier (or confi…

nādira

(62 words)

nādira (A), pl. nawādir : lit. rare thing, rarity; a pleasing anecdote containing wit, humour, joculari…

naʿd̲j̲a

(9 words)

naʿd̲j̲a (A) : a reproductive ewe. G̲h̲anam

nad̲j̲ama

(4 words)

nad̲j̲ama It̲h̲t̲h̲ag̲h̲ara

nad̲j̲d̲j̲ār

(8 words)

nad̲j̲d̲j̲ār (A) : a carpenter. Sūḳ

nad̲j̲is

(44 words)

nad̲j̲is (A) : impure (ant. ṭāhir). In law, nad̲j̲āsāt are things impure in themselves and cannot be purified; mutanad…

nad̲j̲l

(7 words)

nad̲j̲l (A) : progeny. al-Ṣag̲h̲ānī

nad̲j̲m

(51 words)

nad̲j̲m (A, pl. nud̲j̲ūm) : star (syn. kawkab, also ‘planet’); an alternative name for the Pleiades, otherw…

nad̲j̲s̲h̲

(13 words)

nad̲j̲s̲h̲ (A) : the raising of prices, condemmed by Tradition. Tid̲j̲āra

nad̲j̲wā

(37 words)

nad̲j̲wā (A) : under the Fāṭimids, a tax which had to be paid by those who were present at the Ismāʿ…

nadra

(18 words)

nadra (A) : in minerology, a pure or virtually pure piece of gold and silver. K̲h̲ums

nafād̲h̲

(16 words)

nafād̲h̲ (A) : in prosody, the vowel of the hāʾ serving as waṣl. Ḳāfiya

nafaḳa

(31 words)

nafaḳa (A) : in law, maintenance, i.e. of the necessities of life, consisting of food, clothing and …

nafal

(30 words)

nafal (A, pl. anfāl) : in early Islam, a bonus share given to those warriors who distinguished themselv…

naffād̲h̲

(32 words)

naffād̲h̲ (A) : a seller of amulets and images, listed by the 8th/14th-century poet Ṣafī al-Dīn al-Ḥ…

naffās̲h̲

(21 words)

naffās̲h̲ (A) : in botany, the Seville orange ( Citrus aurantium amara or vulgaris or bigaradia), also called Nāran…

nāfid̲h̲

(16 words)

nāfid̲h̲ (A), or sālik : through-way, e.g. s̲h̲āriʿ nāfid̲h̲ or g̲h̲ayr nāfid̲h̲ ‘cul-de-sac’. S̲h̲arḥ

nāfiḳāʾ

(17 words)

nāfiḳāʾ (A, pl. nawāfīḳ) : the burrow of the jerboa (syn. ḳuṣʿa and variants). Yarbūʿ

nāfila

(57 words)

nāfila (A, pl. nawāfil) : in theology, supererogatory work; those works which are supererogatory in the…

nafs

(98 words)

nafs (A, pl. anfus, nufūs) : soul; self, person. Nafīsī, Saʿīd; and Rūḥ In divination, ~ is a term of geomancy, b…

nafṭ

(91 words)

nafṭ (A, P naft) : the purest form of Mesopotamian bitumen. Barṣīṣā; a generic, vague appellation for a…

nafūd

(27 words)

nafūd (A) : a sandy area, in the north of the Arabian peninsula; in the south it is called a ramla. Ḏj̲azīrat al-ʿArab; …

nafūr

(17 words)

nafūr (A) : in the terminology of horse-riding, a horse that swerves and shies. Furūsiyya

nafy

(14 words)

nafy (A) : in grammar, negation (ant. īd̲j̲āb ‘affirmation’). al-Nafūsī; and Nefy

naga

(22 words)

naga (J) : a Hindu serpent guardian spirit, which sculpture frequently graces the entrance to a sain…

nahār

(50 words)

nahār (A) : a day, which extends from sunrise to sunset. Lawn; the ~ begins at the moment that the u…

nahḍa

(31 words)

nahḍa (A) : ‘awakening’, the Arab renaissance, the rebirth of Arabic literature and thought under We…

naḥīta

(32 words)

naḥīta (A, pl. nuḥut) : the ‘moving section’, a bee hive that is not welded to the wall of a dwelling, …

nāḥiye

(50 words)

nāḥiye (T, < A nāḥiya ‘district, vicinity’) : in Ottoman administration, the subdivisions of a wilāyet ‘province’ (…

naḥl

(27 words)

naḥl (A, P) : in zoology, domestic or social bees (apid family). A swarm is called dabr, which is grouped around the…

naḥr

(69 words)

naḥr (A) : in law, one of the two methods of slaughtering animals, by which the animal concerned bec…

nahr

(48 words)

nahr (A, pl. anhār, anhur) : running water, hence a perennial watercourse, river, stream of any size, thus opposed to a w…

naḥw

(87 words)

naḥw (A, pl. anḥāʾ) : path, way; fashion, manner. Maʿārif In grammar, the term for ‘grammar’ (to be contrasted…

nahy

(64 words)

nahy (A) : prohibition; in religion, the phrase al-nahy ʿan al-munkar ‘forbidding wrong’ (in full, preceded by al-amr…

nāʾib

(141 words)

nāʾib (A) : substitute, delegate, any person appointed as deputy of another in an official position; Naḥw; and Safīr In…

nāʾiba

(27 words)

nāʾiba (A) : an occasional tax in kind, levied by the first Saʿdīs; it later became more or less per…

nāḳa

(51 words)

nāḳa (A) : the female camel, a term also found in the Qurʾān, where it appears in the edifying stori…

naḳā

(87 words)

naḳā (A) : a term connected with nuḳāwā, a generic noun denoting alkaline plants utilised for washing linen…

naḳad

(51 words)

naḳad (A) : a strain of sheep in Bahrain in the time of al-Ḏj̲āḥiẓ, which was stunted but a good woo…

naḳāʾiḍ

(74 words)

naḳāʾiḍ (A, s. naḳīḍa) : in prosody, a form of poetic duelling in which tribal or personal insults are …

naḳarāt

(29 words)

naḳarāt (T) : lit. peckings; in Turkish poetry, the refrain, that is, the ultimate line or ultimate …

naḳb

(69 words)

naḳb (A, pl. nuḳūb) : an underground tunnel; in military science, mining, a system of siege warfare whi…

naḳḍ

(36 words)

naḳḍ (A) : ‘refutation’, in particular when used in reference to a book. Radd; and Radd naḳḍ al-mīt̲h̲āḳ

naḳd

(67 words)

naḳd (A) : in law, the portion of the dowry handed over at the conclusion of a marriage. In modern Arabic, ~ signifies…

nak̲h̲k̲h̲ās

(32 words)

nak̲h̲k̲h̲ās (A) : ‘cattle-dealer’, a term in the mediaeval period for a slave merchant. ʿAbd; Sūḳ; …

nak̲h̲l

(17 words)

nak̲h̲l (A, s. nak̲h̲la) : in botany, the date palm ( Phoenix dactylifera). Ḏj̲azīrat al-ʿArab; Nak̲h̲čiwān

nāk̲h̲udāh

(18 words)

nāk̲h̲udāh (A, < H nāo and P k̲h̲udā) : in navigation, a term for ‘captain’. Milāḥa

naḳīʿ

(17 words)

naḳīʿ (A) : drinks composed of fruits (dates, etc.) mixed in water. Mas̲h̲riḳ al-Ad̲h̲kār; ʿUrs

naḳīb

(299 words)

naḳīb (A, pl. nuḳabāʾ) : chief, leader, of a tribe or other group; in early Islam, the Medinans negotia…

naḳīr

(28 words)

naḳīr (A) : in early Islam, a palmtrunk which is hollowed out and into which small dates and water a…

nāḳiṣ

(53 words)

nāḳiṣ (A) : in literary theory, an imperfect paronomasia whereby one term is incomplete by one or tw…

naḳḳāra

(76 words)

naḳḳāra (A, T naḳḳāre) : a medium-sized kettle-drum made of copper, one of the instruments of the milit…

naḳḳās̲h̲

(73 words)

naḳḳās̲h̲ (A) : die-sinker, one of the craftsmen employed as staff in the mediaeval mint, whose prof…

naḳl

(10 words)

naḳl (A) : transport. Naḳḳās̲h̲-K̲h̲āna; Naḳd; and Tard̲j̲ama

naḳra

(10 words)

naḳra (A) : in music, a beat. Ṭihrānī

naḳṣ

(25 words)

naḳṣ (A) : in prosody, a type of double deviation (Ziḥāf), whereby there are two cases per foot, com…

naḳs̲h̲

(30 words)

naḳs̲h̲ Taṣwīr naḳs̲h̲ ḥadīda (N.Afr) : the name given to the sculpturing of…

nāḳūs

(50 words)

nāḳūs (A, < Syr; pl. nawāḳīs) : a kind of rattle once used and in some places still used by Eastern Chris…

naʿl

(134 words)

naʿl (A) : in early Islam, a sandal which could be of palm fibre, smooth leather, or leather with an…

nalam

(66 words)

nalam (Mal) : a genre of Acehnese poetry, using partly the urd̲j̲ūza (Rad̲j̲az), partly the ḳaṣīda as model, bu…

nāma

(42 words)

nāma (P) : a letter; royal edict or diploma; a register, and in many ways the equivalent of the Arab…

namas̲h̲

(18 words)

namas̲h̲ (A) : in mineralogy, freckles or inclusions, a defect or impurity in a gem. Yāḳūt

namāzgāh

(81 words)

namāzgāh (P) : ‘place of prayer’, in India, an alternative name for ʿīdgāh, the open structure built usually to …

namir

(65 words)

namir (A), or nimr : in zoology, the panther ( Panthera pardus), better known, in Africa, by the name of ‘leopa…

naml

(40 words)

naml (A) : in zoology, ants (s. namla). In law, small ants ( d̲h̲arr) are permitted to be killed when they intrud…

nammām

(5 words)

nammām Fūd̲h̲and̲j̲; Ṣandal

nāmūs

(154 words)

nāmūs (A) : originally, a transcription of the Greek νόμος, which was left untranslated in Ibn His̲h…
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