sa·​ri ˈsär-ē How to pronounce sari (audio)
variants or less commonly saree
: a garment of southern Asian women that consists of several yards of lightweight cloth draped so that one end forms a skirt and the other a head or shoulder covering

Illustration of sari

Illustration of sari

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Shiva, dressed in a burgundy sari and a shawl the color of rust, was a formidable sight. Keith Kloor, Discover Magazine, 18 Aug. 2014 Their apartment contains hints of happier times: their 2000 wedding picture — Sridevi in a bright purple sari, the 6-foot-2 Thirugnanam towering behind her — a school drawing made by their son, photos of him in every room. Danica Kirka, ajc, 15 Nov. 2022 Hema, a thin woman in a purple sari, sat on the stairs. Dhruv Khullar, The New Yorker, 25 July 2022 The man from the URA grabbed at his sari with his knotty fingers and his eyes rolled back into his head. Vladimir Sorokin, Harper’s Magazine , 20 July 2022 In Syrian Christian weddings in Kerala, the priest puts the rings on the fingers of the bride and the groom, and the mother-in-law places a bright sari over the bride’s shoulder to symbolise that the union is complete. Manavi Kapur, Quartz, 4 Mar. 2022 Their parents found out about Nitin’s new career path, and their gender identity, after seeing a photo of them in a sari on Facebook. Aamina Khan, Vogue, 31 Jan. 2022 The uproar around Carrie Bradshaw’s sari–lehenga mixup has taken a life of its own on the internet. Ananya Bhattacharya, Quartz, 21 Jan. 2022 In Rajasthan's Udaipur, a canopied boat, as colorful as a sari, has delivered me across Lake Pichola to the palatial Oberoi Udaivilas. Becca Hensley, Travel + Leisure, 26 Dec. 2021 See More

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

Word History


Hindi & Urdu sāṛī, from Sanskrit śāṭī strip of cloth

First Known Use

1785, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sari was in 1785

Dictionary Entries Near sari

Cite this Entry

“Sari.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition


variants also saree
: a garment worn by women in southern Asia that consists of a long cloth draped around the body and head or shoulder

More from Merriam-Webster on sari

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