bur·​ka ˈbu̇r-kə How to pronounce burka (audio)
variants or burqa
: a loose enveloping garment that covers the face and body and is worn in public by certain Muslim women

Examples of burka in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Female students would understand very quickly that a burka or veil isn't a hoodie - that is if they were even allowed to attend university at all. Noah Rothman, National Review, 10 Nov. 2023 Over a century later, Americans declared their goal of liberating Afghan women from the burka. Sara Tatyana Bernstein, Longreads, 10 Mar. 2022 Those who were brave enough to venture out spoke in hushed voices, for fear of provoking a Taliban beating for anything as simple as not having a long-enough beard (for a man) or a long-enough burka (for a woman), or sometimes for nothing at all. Lynsey Addario, The Atlantic, 16 Aug. 2021 For the past 20 years, Kabul has become a place where women can walk freely, where they're not forced to wear the burka or be accompanied by a male relative — those basic freedoms may soon be under threat once the U.S. withdraws. Charlie D'agata, CBS News, 30 Apr. 2021 Yes, the burka is oppressive and ridiculous—but that’s still no reason to ban it. Ariel Levy, The New Yorker, 25 May 2020 Once the Americans leave, women under Taliban rule would be obliged to wear a hair-covering hijab, rather than the body-covering burka, Shaheen said. Matt Bradley, NBC News, 20 July 2019 In 2001, Carolyn Maloney, then Congresswoman from New York, made a show of putting on a burka on the floor of the House of Representatives. Rafia Zakaria, The New Republic, 12 June 2018 The Afghan man with the long beard, white turban, and worn farmer’s hands led his wife, draped all in a flowing dark blue burka, into a small office booth in Kabul. Scott Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, 29 Mar. 2018

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'burka.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Urdu, Persian & Arabic; Urdu burqaʽ, from Persian burqaʽ, burquʽ, from Arabic burquʽ

First Known Use

1836, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of burka was in 1836

Dictionary Entries Near burka

Cite this Entry

“Burka.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/burka. Accessed 19 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


variants or burqa
: a loose garment that covers the head, face, and body and is worn in public by certain Muslim women
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