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

  • n. Any of various government officials in India, especially a regional prime minister.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A holder of any of various offices in various (usually Islamic) countries, usually some sort of councillor.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In India: A financial officer formerly appointed under the Mohammedan governments in each province for the purpose of superintending the collection of the revenue, etc.
  • n. The chief financial minister of a state.
  • n. The prime minister of a native state.
  • n. The chief native officer of certain government establishments, as the mint.
  • n. In Bengal, a native servant in confidential charge of the dealings of a house of business with natives, or of the affairs of a large domestic establishment.


Hindi dīvān, from Persian, account book.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Ultimately from Persian دیوان (dīvān). (Wiktionary)


  • An officer, called dewan, or steward of the country, had always been placed as a control on the farmer; but that no such control should in fact exist, that he, Debi Sing, should be let loose to rapine, slaughter, and plunder in the country, both offices were conferred on him.

    The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. 10 (of 12)

  • dinesh: No, it's the same word; that meaning comes under the OED's "dewan" entry: DIVAN.

  • Labels: dewan sastera, dina zaman, malaysian authors, nisah haji harun, shirley lim posted by bibliobibuli at 6: 38 AM

    Recognising Local Writers

  • At the garrison gates, the dewan who until now welcomed Mundy with a beaming salute is granite-faced, and Ayah stands as white as all the ghosts she fears in her grief, anger and disgust.

    Absolute Friends

  • The dewan searched high and low but all in vain, and as the time drew near he grew more and more anxious, for he feared that he would fall into disgrace.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas

  • In his agony he sent for a hyaena and offered to make him his _dewan_, if only he would call all the other animals of the forest to come and pay a farewell visit to their lord.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas

  • The Raja and the dewan did not like to disappoint their sons so they bought the horses, to the great delight of the boys, who used to ride them every day.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas

  • So the dewan presented himself before the Raja with the dumb shepherd and found a large company assembled to see what happened.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas

  • Then the Raja told his dewan that he must without fail find some one who would, guess his thought, and he gave the dewan exactly one month's time in which to search.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas

  • The dewan had to take what comfort he could from this promise, and when the appointed day arrived, his daughter brought a dumb shepherd whom they employed and bade her father take him to the Raja.

    Folklore of the Santal Parganas


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.