[ shah, shaw ]
/ ʃɑ, ʃɔ /

noun (often initial capital letter)

(formerly, in Iran) king; sovereign.

Nearby words

  1. shaggy-mane,
  2. shagreen,
  3. shagreen skin,
  4. shagroon,
  5. shagtastic,
  6. shah alam,
  7. shah jahan,
  8. shah of iran,
  9. shahada,
  10. shahansha

Origin of shah

1560–70; < Persian: king

Related formsshah·dom, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for shah

British Dictionary definitions for shah


/ (ʃɑː) /


a ruler of certain Middle Eastern countries, esp (formerly) Iran
Derived Formsshahdom, noun

Word Origin for shah

C16: from Persian: king

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 shah



title of the king of Persia, 1560s, shaw, from Persian shah, shortened from Old Persian xšayathiya "king," from Indo-Iranian *ksayati "he has power over, rules" from PIE *tke- "to gain control of, gain power over" (cf. Sanskrit ksatram "dominion;" Greek krasthai "to acquire, get," kektesthai "to possess"). His wife is a shahbanu (from banu "lady"); his son is a shahzadah (from zadah "son").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper