• IPA: /ʃeɪk/, /ʃiːk/

sheik (plural sheiks)

  1. The leader of an Arab village, family or small tribe.
  2. An Islamic religious cleric; the leader of an Islamic religious order.
  3. (some Arab Gulf countries) An official title for members of the royal family as well as some prominent families.
  4. (1920s) A romantic lover. (from the 1921 film The Sheik)
    • 1939, George Orwell, Coming Up for Air, part 1, chapter 1:
      When your last natural tooth goes, the time when you can kid yourself that you're a Hollywood sheik, is definitely at an end.
  5. (slang) An Arab, especially one dressed in traditional clothing.
  6. An honorific for specialists in spirituality.
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