Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A legal opinion or ruling issued by an Islamic scholar.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A legal opinion, decree or ruling issued by a mufti or other Islamic lawyer.
  • v. To make somebody the subject of a fatwa, especially a ban or death sentence.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Same as fetwah.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a ruling on a point of Islamic law that is given by a recognized authority

Etymologies

Arabic fatwā, legal opinion; see ptw in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Arabic فتوى (fatwā), a formal legal opinion. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • This fatwa is an absolute condemnation of terrorism.

    My fatwa is bigger than yours « Anglican Samizdat

  • According to Khan, a fatwa is a response given in writing to a specific question, and can only be given by a qualified scholar, or 'mufti.'

    Sania Mirza

  • In February 1998, the 40-year-old Saudi exile Usama Bin Ladin and a fugitive Egyptian physician, Ayman al Zawahiri, arranged from their Afghan headquarters for an Arabic newspaper in London to publish what they termed a fatwa issued in the name of a "World Islamic Front."

    Newsvine - Get Smarter Here

  • I think the use of the expression "fatwa" is insensitive, rude and unnecessary.

    Extra Fizz: Council Cuts Travel Budget in Half « PubliCola

  • A "fatwa" is simply a considered opinion of a Muslim jurisconsult.

    Archive 2005-07-01

  • Sheik Omar Bakri Muhammad, judge of the Shari'ah Court of the UK said The fatwa is to express the Islamic point of view that those who are insulting to Allah and the messengers of God, they must understand it is a crime.

    February 2008

  • In Sunni Islam any fatwa is non-binding, whereas in Shia Islam it could be, depending on the status of the scholar.

    Homosexuality – punishable by death?

  • This was the first time that most people outside the Muslim world had heard the word fatwa, or religious edict.

    Christopher Hitchens on the cultural fatwa

  • For instance, a 2004 fatwa from the imprisoned head of al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia declared that targeting oil pipelines and refineries was a legitimate form of economic jihad — and that economic jihad “is one of the most powerful ways in which we can take revenge on the infidels during this present stage.”

    Declaring Victory

  • Following the Salman Rushdie affair, the word fatwa became commonplace in our vernacular - it, lamentably, became associated with death, killing, and censorship.

    WN.com - Articles related to Merkel says aid for Greece not issue at EU summit

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