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n. pl. Mah·dis Islam
a. The messiah prophesied to appear at the world's end and establish a reign of peace and righteousness.
b. In Twelver Shia belief, the 12th imam, who is expected to emerge from occultation to fulfill this role.
2. A person who claims to be or is seen as the messiah.

[Arabic mahdī, rightly guided one, Mahdi, passive participle of hadā, to lead; see hdy in Semitic roots.]

Mah′dism n.
Mah′dist n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Mahdist - an adherent of Mahdism
adherent, disciple - someone who believes and helps to spread the doctrine of another
References in periodicals archive ?
A Royal Navy flotilla accompanied Lord Kitchener on his expedition up the Nile during the 1898 reconquest of the Sudan after the Mahdist Revolt, performing a number of functions in support of the land forces.
Following the crushing defeat of Mahdi's successor Khalifa Abdullahi, one of the former Mahdist insurgents, Ali Jula who had been fighting alongside the Mahdist dervishes went back to the Misseriya land and usurped power from Sheikh Azoza who had been at peace with Southern neighbours.
Ayyad's tale begins when he travels to Sudan, seeking work with the British and Egyptians who rule the country during the Mahdist uprising.
Sudan's only comparative experience might be the Mahdist Jihad of the 1880s.
The Mahdist regime (1882-1898) was an outcome of this state of affairs, as it resulted from a religious uprising against the cruelties and inhuman style of the Turkish rule.
Set in 19 th century Mahdist Sudan, "The Longing of the Dervish" draws heavily on the historical and spiritual symbolism of an important era of the modern Sudanese history.
During the country's stint with independence between 1886 and 1899, the Mahdist Sudan waged a war of religion against Ethiopia.
Shawq el Darwish is a love story about a Sudanese slave in 19 th century Sudan during the Mahdist revolution and the fall of Khartoum.
After the defeat of the Mahdist army in 1898, during the battle of Omdurman, the people of North Sudan accepted the rule of the new Anglo-Egyptian regime.
As usual, there are always exceptions or partial similarities--in this respect we can perhaps compare the early Joachites to the Mahdist movements in the peripheries of the Islamic world or to the doctrine of the militant Nizari Isma'ili Shi'ites.
Was it likely that he was involved in Mahdist movements or had any doctrine regarding the coming of the Mahdi?
In The River War: An Historical Account of the Reconquest of the Sudan, Winston Churchill presented the British perspective on the conflict between British/Egyptian forces and the Sudanese forces of the Sudanese Mahdist Revolt of the late 19th century, largely focusing, as one might expect, on the agency of the British officers involved in the fighting.