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Ayatollah

Ayatollah (Arab., ‘sign of God’). Title of high-ranking Shiʿite Muslim authorities, especially in Iran. It is a recent (20th cent.) title for exceptional jurists (mujtāhid), whose authority rests on that of the infallible Imām—though in 1979, the Ayatollah Khomeini (see KHUMAYNI) adopted the title of Imām for himself. An Ayatollah's decisions (fatwā) have authority only for those who examine and agree with them—in theory; in practice, Ayatollahs gain personal followings, among whom their decisions are accepted as binding. The extension of these personal followings to even wider communities is again a recent innovation.

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"Ayatollah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Apr. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Ayatollah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah

"Ayatollah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Retrieved April 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah

ayatollah

ayatollah (Arabic, reflection of God) Honorific title bestowed upon a Muslim leader who has attained significant distinction and, often, political influence. See also Khomeini, Ruhollah

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"ayatollah." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Apr. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"ayatollah." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ayatollah

"ayatollah." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved April 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ayatollah

ayatollah

a·ya·tol·lah / ˌäyəˈtōlə/ • n. a Shiite religious leader in Iran.

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"ayatollah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Apr. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"ayatollah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah-0

"ayatollah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved April 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah-0

ayatollah

ayatollah: see Shiites.

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"ayatollah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Apr. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"ayatollah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ayatollah

"ayatollah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved April 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ayatollah

ayatollah

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"ayatollah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 23 Apr. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"ayatollah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 23, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah

"ayatollah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved April 23, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/ayatollah