pyjama

US pajama

/ (pəˈdʒɑːmə) /

noun (modifier)

of or forming part of pyjamaspyjama top
requiring pyjamas to be worna pyjama party

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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

VOCAB BUILDER

What does pyjama mean?

The word pyjama, without an s, is used as a modifier in terms involving pyjamas (pajamas)—the clothes you wear to sleep in.

It’s used in terms like pyjama pants, pyjama top, and pyjama party. The spelling pyjama is typically used by speakers of British English (who use the spelling pyjamas for the noun). Otherwise, it’s usually spelled pajama.

You could say that whatever clothes you change into before going to bed are your pajamas. Traditionally, though, pajamas are specifically made and sold as clothes for sleeping in, typically consisting of soft, loose-fitting pants or shorts and a (sometimes matching) top. There are many different types and styles, such as nightgowns. Clothes considered pajamas aren’t only worn for sleeping—many people wear them as loungewear.

The word pajamas is commonly and informally abbreviated as p.j.’s, and the term p.j. can be used as an informal replacement of pajama, as in p.j. pants. The word jammies is an even more informal word for pajamas, and the word jammie can replace pajama in the same way, as in jammie pants.

Example: I have a lot of pyjama bottoms that I wear around the house, but I never sleep in them.

Where does pyjama come from?

The first records of the words pajama and pyjama as modifiers come from the early 1900s. The words pajamas and pyjamas are recorded earlier, in the 1800s. They come from the Hindi pāyjāma, from the Persian pāy, meaning “leg,” and jāma, meaning “garment.”

Originally, the word pajamas referred to loose-fitting pants worn in parts of Asia, usually made of silk or cotton. It then came to refer to a style of women’s pants, especially ones flared at the bottom, worn as leisurewear. Eventually, the word’s association with loose-fitting clothing resulted in its use as a term for sleepwear.

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How is pyjama used in real life?

The spelling pyjama is typically used by speakers of British English.

 

 

Try using pyjama!

Is pyjama used correctly in the following sentence?

I usually just use old T-shirts as pyjama tops.

Example sentences from the Web for pyjama