geisha

noun
gei·​sha | \ ˈgā-shə How to pronounce geisha (audio) also ˈgē-\
plural geisha or geishas

Definition of geisha

: a Japanese girl or woman who is trained to provide entertaining and lighthearted company especially for a man or a group of men

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Did You Know?

In Japan, a geisha is a member of a professional class of women whose occupation is to entertain men. She must be adept at singing, dancing, and playing the samisen (a three-stringed musical instrument), in addition to being skilled at making conversation. The geisha system is thought to have emerged in the 17th century to provide a class of well-trained entertainers set apart from courtesans and prostitutes: though geisha sometimes had sexual relationships with clients, they were supposed to entertain primarily through their accomplishments. The numbers of geisha have declined from some 80,000 in the 1920s to a few thousand at present, almost all confined to Tokyo and Kyoto, where they are patronized by only the wealthiest businessmen and most influential politicians.

Examples of geisha in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But Fashion Nova isn’t the only company selling geisha costumes. Mekita Rivas, Allure, "Fashion Nova's "Sexy" Geisha Costume Is Everything Not to Wear on Halloween This Year," 3 Oct. 2018 Vicky Tsai, a 40-year-old former financier, started Tatcha LLC nearly a decade ago after she was introduced to centuries-old beauty customs used by Japan’s geisha that cleared up her own skin problems. Jaewon Kang, WSJ, "Geisha Effect: Asian Skin Care Shakes Up the U.S. Beauty Market," 29 Jan. 2019 But Fashion Nova isn’t the only company selling geisha costumes. Mekita Rivas, Allure, "Fashion Nova's "Sexy" Geisha Costume Is Everything Not to Wear on Halloween This Year," 3 Oct. 2018 Maeve's doppelbot is a Geisha madam named Akane (Kikuchi) who shares Maeve's physical skills, smarts and maternal instincts, this time for a young geisha named Sakura (Kiki Sukezane). Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "'Westworld' recap: A trip to Shogun World makes Episode 5 the best this season," 20 May 2018 But Fashion Nova isn’t the only company selling geisha costumes. Mekita Rivas, Allure, "Fashion Nova's "Sexy" Geisha Costume Is Everything Not to Wear on Halloween This Year," 3 Oct. 2018 Formerly Japan's capital for over 1,000 years, the city of 1.5 million is packed with fragments of the past, from a still-operating geisha district to some 1,600 ancient temples. Caitlin Morton, Condé Nast Traveler, "14 Photos That Will Make You Want to Visit Kyoto," 23 Jan. 2018 But Fashion Nova isn’t the only company selling geisha costumes. Mekita Rivas, Allure, "Fashion Nova's "Sexy" Geisha Costume Is Everything Not to Wear on Halloween This Year," 3 Oct. 2018 But Fashion Nova isn’t the only company selling geisha costumes. Mekita Rivas, Teen Vogue, "Fashion Nova Is Selling a “Sexy” Geisha Halloween Costume," 1 Oct. 2018

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

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First Known Use of geisha

1881, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for geisha

Japanese, from gei art + -sha person

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Dictionary Entries near geisha

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Geisel

geisha

geison

geisotherm

Geissler bulb

Statistics for geisha

Last Updated

3 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for geisha

The first known use of geisha was in 1881

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More Definitions for geisha

geisha

noun

English Language Learners Definition of geisha

: a Japanese girl who is trained to entertain men with singing, conversation, etc.

More from Merriam-Webster on geisha

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about geisha

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