[puh-jah-muh z, -jam-uh z]

noun (used with a plural verb) Chiefly British.


[puh-jah-muh z, -jam-uh z]

noun (used with a plural verb)

night clothes consisting of loose-fitting trousers and jacket.
loose-fitting trousers, usually of silk or cotton, worn by both sexes in Asia, especially in the East.
Also especially British, py·jam·as.

Origin of pajamas

1870–75; plural of pajama < Hindi, variant of pāyjāma < Persian pāy leg + jāma garment
Related formspa·ja·maed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pyjamas

Contemporary Examples of pyjamas

Historical Examples of pyjamas

  • He pulled up the leg of his pyjamas to exhibit the strapped knife.


    Joseph Conrad

  • He was wearing a suit of pyjamas not nearly big enough for him.

    The Red Hand of Ulster

    George A. Birmingham

  • There was a suit of pyjamas of Hamilton's which had a stripe very near, but not quite.


    Edgar Wallace

  • Clothed in his pyjamas he opened the door between the rooms.

    Five Tales

    John Galsworthy

  • “We must have plenty, and flannels and pyjamas,” said Sir John.

    Jack at Sea

    George Manville Fenn

British Dictionary definitions for pyjamas


US pajamas

pl n

loose-fitting nightclothes comprising a jacket or top and trousers
full loose-fitting ankle-length trousers worn by either sex in various Eastern countries
women's flared trousers or trouser suit used esp for leisure wear

Word Origin for pyjamas

C19: from Hindi, from Persian pāi leg + jāmah clothing, garment


pl n

the US spelling of pyjamas
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 pyjamas

also pyjama (adj.), chiefly British English spelling of pajamas. Early spellings in English also include pai jamahs (1800); pigammahs (1834), peijammahs (1840).



1800, pai jamahs "loose trousers tied at the waist," worn by Muslims in India and adopted by Europeans there, especially for nightwear, from Hindi pajama, probably from Persian paejamah, literally "leg clothing," from pae "leg" (from PIE *ped- "foot," see foot (n.)) + jamah "clothing." Modern spelling (U.S.) is from 1845. British spelling tends toward pyjamas.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper