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1. A member of any of various Muslim ascetic orders, some of which perform whirling dances and vigorous chanting as acts of ecstatic devotion.
2. One that possesses abundant, often frenzied energy: "[She] is a dervish of unfocused energy, an accident about to happen" (Jane Gross).
[Turkish derviş, mendicant, from Persian darvēš, from Middle Persian driyōš, needy one, one who lives in holy mendicancy, from Old Iranian (Avestan) drigu-; akin to Sanskrit adhriguḥ (a divine epithet of unknown but favorable meaning) : perhaps a-, not + *dhrigu-, poor.]
(Islam) a member of any of various Muslim orders of ascetics, some of which (whirling dervishes) are noted for a frenzied, ecstatic, whirling dance
[C16: from Turkish: beggar, from Persian darvīsh mendicant monk]
a member of any of various Muslim ascetic orders, some of which practice ecstatic dancing and whirling or chanting and shouting.
[1575–85; < Turkish < Persian]
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|Noun||1.||dervish - an ascetic Muslim monk; a member of an order noted for devotional exercises involving bodily movements|