Hinduism, Buddhism. a god or divinity.
Zoroastrianism. one of an order of evil spirits.

Origin of deva

From Sanskrit Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for deva

Historical Examples of deva

  • And yet we know that there never was such a Deva, or god, or such a thing as Varuna.

  • The positive force you call the Deva or Sura; his face is turned, it seems, to God.


    Annie Besant

  • That gives them a special affinity for one Deva rather than for another.

  • And perhaps, while he is about it, he might get killed in a Deva gorge.

    Northern Spain

    Edgar T. A. Wigram

  • It is the great caon of the Deva, one of the finest passes in the world.

    Northern Spain

    Edgar T. A. Wigram

British Dictionary definitions for deva



(in Hinduism and Buddhism) a divine being or god

Word Origin for deva

C19: from Sanskrit: god
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

Word Origin and History for deva

"god, good spirit" in Hindu religion, from Sanskrit deva "a god," originally "a shining one," from *div- "to shine," thus cognate with Greek dios "divine" and Zeus, and Latin deus "god" (Old Latin deivos); see Zeus.

Fem. form devi is used for "goddess," also (with capital D-) for the mother goddess in Hinduism. Hence, also, devadasi "temple dancing girl," literally "female servant of a god," from dasi "slave girl." Also Devanagari, the formal alphabet of Sanskrit writings, perhaps originally "divine city script," from nagara "city."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper