caf·tan | \ ˈkaf-(ˌ)tan \
variants: or less commonly

Definition of caftan 

: a usually cotton or silk ankle-length garment with long sleeves that is common throughout the Middle East

Examples of caftan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

His booming voice glides from baritone to falsetto, his statements as colorful as his turbans, leopard print coats, capes and caftans. Carolyne Zinko, Houston Chronicle, "Review: Stylish Andre Leon Talley documentary needs more substance," 20 June 2018 Aside from a caftan, the best summer outfit is a head-to-toe white ensemble. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "This New Brand Has Mastered Western Style," 13 July 2018 Their latest collection for Fall is equal parts chic caftans, flirty animal-print dresses, and lavender suede trousers that somehow feel like closet basics—but so much more. Kerry Pieri, Harper's BAZAAR, "4 Chic Fashion Brands Doing Things Right, Right Now," 2 July 2018 Riley’s satire is never wider than in its treatment of WorryFree, the tech giant run by the movie's big bad: CEO Steve Lift, played by a caftan-wearing Armie Hammer. Joseph Bien-kahn, WIRED, "Radical As Ever, Boots Riley Takes On the Tech Boom," 4 July 2018 Beach cover-ups tend to be loose and flowy: a sheer caftan, an oversize men’s shirt. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "Why Not Wear a Billowy White Blouse to the Beach?," 19 June 2018 Monáe soundlessly padded into the room, clad in a velour caftan, gold earrings and rings to match. Jenna Wortham, New York Times, "How Janelle Monáe Found Her Voice," 19 Apr. 2018 Novack has the ability to lift the veil, or in Talley’s case, the billowing caftans, that have shrouded him in certain mystery. Elizabeth Wellington,, "Black fashion superhero André Leon Talley finally gets his due in new documentary," 6 June 2018 This year, every cool girl in town — or, influencer blowing up your Instagram feed — will be wearing a caftan. Amber Elliott, Houston Chronicle, "I dream of caftans," 23 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'caftan.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of caftan

1591, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for caftan

Russian & Turkish; Russian kaftan, from Turkish, from Persian qaftān

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about caftan

Dictionary Entries near caftan

Caffre cat







Statistics for caftan

Last Updated

11 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for caftan

The first known use of caftan was in 1591

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for caftan



English Language Learners Definition of caftan

: a long piece of clothing with long sleeves that is worn by men in countries that are just east of the Mediterranean Sea

More from Merriam-Webster on caftan

See words that rhyme with caftan Encyclopedia article about caftan

Comments on caftan

What made you want to look up caftan? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to deposit or conceal in a hiding place

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Food Quiz

Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!