Meaning of sheikh in English:


Translate sheikh into Spanish


(also shaikh)
  • 1An Arab leader, in particular the chief or head of an Arab tribe, family, or village.

    as title ‘Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan al-Nahyan’
    • ‘Loyalties depend on personal relationships with tribal chiefs, sheiks or warlords, rather than allegiance to the nation.’
    • ‘The sheikh in that village is the leader of the local sports club.’
    • ‘But while sending in two reporters dressed as Arab sheikhs might seem underhand to some, the story garnered by these methods was firmly in the public interest.’
    • ‘It is not caused by trade unions, Arab oil sheikhs or even the weather.’
    • ‘Years ago, a group of us were paid to coach rugby to young Arab sheikhs in Bahrain.’
    • ‘I was terrified of the operation, and went and consulted the village sheikh, who told me it wasn't necessary.’
    • ‘This report is now circulating all over the Arab world to the right people, including the Middle East Arab central bankers, the sheiks, the money manager advisors, etc.’
    • ‘Powerful local families or sheiks took their place, setting up their own militias and spawning inter-tribal feuds.’
    • ‘My mother was a princess, my father the son of the chief of the sheiks.’
    • ‘She lunched in the tents of both the Druze and their sworn enemies, the Beni Sakhr, and met with the sheiks of various Bedouin tribes.’
    • ‘Highest racing figures on the list are two sheikhs from the United Arab Emirates.’
    • ‘The shaykhs and their tribes pledge their allegiance to the ruling Al Saud royal family.’
    • ‘The colonel conveyed the same message to tribal sheiks and the mayors of surrounding villages.’
    • ‘At Wednesday's opening of the three day General Assembly special session on children, two girls got a chance to address the presidents, sheikhs and kings from over 180 nations.’
    • ‘Earlier this year, Sophie was the victim of a Sunday newspaper ‘sting’ when an undercover reporter, posing as a rich Arab sheik, caught her on camera being indiscreet about other members of the Royal Family.’
    • ‘On Sunday, the preparatory board met to begin planning a national congress of 1000 notables, politicians, religious leaders and tribal sheikhs to be held in July.’
    • ‘Each family group is headed by a sheik (leader).’
    • ‘An intimate group of senators and sheiks dined together at Le Cirque.’
    • ‘Rather than temper their hunting, the kings, princes and sheikhs are seeking to produce their own supply of houbaras.’
    1. 1.1A male member of a ruling Arab family.
  • 2A leader in a Muslim community or organization.

    ‘Where is the outrage from all the international groups, the ICRC, the Red Crescent and all the sheikhs, imams and mullahs?’
    • ‘We have to ask our Muslim leaders, I mean the Imams, or the sheiks or whatever, but we face another problem now, because we believe that they are not completely free.’
    • ‘The service was led by a priest, a Muslim sheik and a Baptist preacher.’
    • ‘Who are the key leaders or sheiks in the community?’
    • ‘Imams, sheiks, engineers, lawyers, educators, administrators and businessmen are among those who make up the council.’
    • ‘To his mother's amusement and modest chagrin, he took Koranic classes with the local sheikh in public school, because his Muslim neighborhood friends took them.’
    • ‘Their path is an attempt to transcend the ego and achieve unity with the divine, with the help of a sheikh (also called pir) and of prayer, meditation and, in the case of the whirling dervishes, dancing.’
    • ‘In his remarks upon receiving the award, the sheikh said, ‘The message of Islam and Muslims is modesty, fairness, security, stability, sympathy, harmony and kindness.’’
    • ‘And the Sufi sheik talks about when you are chanting, I becomes we, and it's no longer the I, and that that's what it's about.’
    • ‘He is our love, he is our sheikh, he is a symbol for Muslims.’
    • ‘Though the domed tomb is revered by Muslims as the burial place of a medieval sheikh, it is regarded in some Jewish circles as the burial spot of the biblical patriarch Joseph.’
    • ‘Back home in Sydney, Habib took up the blind sheik's cause, organising a protest to support the jailed cleric whom he described as his teacher.’
    • ‘Shi'ite sheikhs could represent their small tribal constituencies, just as Sunni sheikhs could represent their followers.’
    • ‘Writers record the deeds and virtues of Somali sheiks, or religious leaders, some with miraculous powers.’
    • ‘It boasted an advisory board of sheiks (religious leaders) from Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Britain and the United States.’
    ruler, sovereign, lord, overlord, dynast, leader, monarch, crowned head



/ʃeɪk/ /ʃiːk/


Late 16th century based on Arabic šayḵ ‘old man, sheikh’, from šāḵa ‘be or grow old’.