[hoo r-ee, houuh r-ee, hou-uh-ree]

Origin of houri

1730–40; < French < Persian hūrī < Arabic ḥūr plural of ḥaurāʾ gazelle-eyed (woman)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for houri

Historical Examples of houri

  • It was very like sitting in a bath, and, after the houri, we had to be carried a long way.

    Southern Arabia

    Theodore Bent

  • I am to pay her—imagine making a pecuniary arrangement with an houri!

    A New Sensation

    Albert Ross

  • Who nightly turns the dwelling of horror into Mahomet's paradise with this Houri.


    E. (Eliza) Fenwick

  • He married this houri and she bore a daughter called Paramisuli.

  • To her Morgiana was fury, houri, and angel all in one moment.

    God Wills It!

    William Stearns Davis

British Dictionary definitions for houri


noun plural -ris
  1. (in Muslim belief) any of the nymphs of Paradise
  2. any alluring woman

Word Origin for houri

C18: from French, from Persian hūri, from Arabic hūr, plural of haurā' woman with dark eyes
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 houri

"nymph of Muslim paradise," 1737, from French houri (1650s), from Persian huri "nymph in Paradise," from Arabic haura "to be beautifully dark-eyed," like a gazelle + -i, Persian formative element denoting the singular.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper