variants or less commonly moulvi
or moolvi
plural maulvies or maulvis
: a learned teacher or doctor of Islamic law
used especially in India as a form of address for a learned Muslim who ministers to the religious needs of others

Word History


Hindi maulvī, from Arabic mawlawī

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Dictionary Entries Near maulvi

Cite this Entry

“Maulvi.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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