variants or Ismaʽili
or less commonly Ismailian
plural -s
: one of a Shiʽa sect composed of those who recognize the Aga Khan as imam

Word History


Ismaili, Ismaʽili from Arabic Ismaʽīlīy, from Ismaʽīla.d. 760 son of the sixth imam Jafar al-Sadiq and in the opinion of the Ismailis his true successor; Ismailian from Arabic Ismaʽīlīy + English -an

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Dictionary Entries Near Ismaili

Cite this Entry

“Ismaili.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2024.

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