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90s Slang You Should Know


[sah-ib, -eeb] /ˈsɑ ɪb, -ib/
(in India) sir; master: a term of respect used, especially during the colonial period, when addressing or referring to a European.
(initial capital letter) singular of Ashab.
Origin of sahib
1690-1700; < Urdu < Arabic ṣāḥib master, literally, friend


[ahs-hahb] /ˈɑs hɑb/
plural noun, singular Sahib
[sah-ib, -eeb] /ˈsɑ ɪb, -ib/ (Show IPA).
those associating with Muhammad at any time in his life.
Compare Ansar, Muhajirun. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for sahib
Historical Examples
  • Next day the fever had slightly abated, when Muhamed Isa slipped gently into my tent to inquire how the sahib was.

  • Natives had come overnight, hearing that a sahib had arrived.

  • Those watching turned sick of stomach, but not so the doctor sahib.

    Banked Fires E. W. (Ethel Winifred) Savi
  • They had not dared to run away because they were in full view of the sahib and of me.

  • We follow the sahib until we see him enter the compound of the hotel.

    The Tigress Anne Warner
  • Then, in a moment, the tiger had disappeared, and the sahib also.

  • Now the woman's voice came to them calling earnestly, "sahib, sahib, sahib!"

    Jack Haydon's Quest John Finnemore
  • "sahib, hum 'certificates' ne hai" (Sir, I have no certificates).

    An Explorer's Adventures in Tibet A. Henry Savage Landor
  • And when our time comes may thou and I, sahib, die as he did, with our harness on!

    Told in the East Talbot Mundy
  • See, sahib, where Pudmini's leg-iron cut the bark of that tree!

    The Jungle Book Rudyard Kipling
British Dictionary definitions for sahib


(in India) a form of address or title placed after a man's name or designation, used as a mark of respect
Word Origin
C17: from Urdu, from Arabic çāhib, literally: friend
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for sahib

respectful address to Europeans in India, 1670s, from Hindi or Urdu sahib "master, lord," from Arabic sahib, originally "friend, companion," from sahiba "he accompanied." Female form ("European lady") is memsahib.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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