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

  • n. A member of the branch of Islam that regards Ali and his descendants as the legitimate successors to Muhammad and rejects the first three caliphs.
  • adj. Of or relating to the Shiites or their branch of Islam.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of, or relating to Shiites or the Shi'a branch of Islam.
  • adj. Of, or relating the Shi'a branch of Islam.
  • n. A member of the Shi'a branch of Islam.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A member of that branch of the Mohammedans to which the Persians belong. They reject the first three caliphs, and consider Ali as being the first and only rightful successor of Mohammed. They do not acknowledge the Sunna, or body of traditions respecting Mohammed, as any part of the law, and on these accounts are treated as heretics by the Sunnites, or orthodox Mohammedans.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Same as Shiah.

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

  • n. a member of the branch of Islam that regards Ali as the legitimate successor to Mohammed and rejects the first three caliphs
  • n. a member of the branch of Islam that regards Ali as the legitimate successor to Mohammed and rejects the first three caliphs


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

Arabic šī'a, partisans; see Shiah.


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