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Using Personal Titles #13: Islamic Religious Titles, by Dennis Oliver


Using Personal Titles #12:
Islamic ReligiousTitles


Islam, a major religion with believers throughout the world,
also uses special titles. Because these titles are generally in
Arabic (or, sometimes, in Persian), most are not well-known
in the English-speaking world. Here are a few that are either
well-known or becoming more commonly used:

title   use with:
Imam--one who leads
public prayers in a
masjid (mosque)
  a full name
Sheikh--a religious
leader; a wise person
  a full name
Hafiz--someone who
has memorized all of
the Koran (the Muslim
holy book)
  a full name
Mullah--someone who
is very knowledgeable
about Islamic religious law
  a full name
Sayid--someone who is
a direct descendent of
the Prophet Mohammed
  a full name



Special Note:

There are various subgroups within Islam (Sunni, Shiite,
Ismaili, Wahabi, etc.) and these groups often have special
titles (such as Ayatollah--a Shiite religious leader) that
are not generally used by other Islamic groups.


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