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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ The higher castes often attempted, though not always successfully, to create their own cordonsanitaire about them when travelling.
▪ Temporal and spiritual power was divided between the two highest castes.
▪ The Brahmins or priests, members of the highest caste, personified purity, sanctity and holiness.
▪ They could never be of lower caste than herself and the principle of lineage exogamy applied.
▪ The Kutchi Rabaris, for example, being a slightly lower sub caste of his own caste, aroused his disapproval.
▪ He molested her for 72 hours before he was shot dead by his lower-caste subordinate, Vikram Mallah.
▪ Mehta warmed to the one historian he met who did not consider journalists a lower caste.
▪ The largest of the lower castes was the Vahumpura, which numbered perhaps six percent of the Sinhalese population.
▪ They were incensed that some one from the lower caste should have become leader of their gang.
▪ She married, converted to a form of Buddhism and entered politics, forming a new party for the lower castes.
▪ In coastal areas social mobility led some lower castes and classes to assert themselves against headmen.
▪ They blew up trains, ransacked upper-caste homes and carried out a series of kidnappings and murders.
▪ Some texts heighten irrational thinking and glorify upper-caste Hindu symbols.
▪ By 1872 the old caste system had been abolished.
▪ He fails to persuade Hindus to repudiate the divisive and unjust social caste system.
▪ Thus, the development of democracy has altered but not displaced traditional identities based on the caste system and religious divisions.
▪ The worst aspect of Hinduism is undoubtedly the caste system, which kept the population cooped up in so many separate compartments.
▪ They would be segregated from members of the caste system and lived on the outskirts of villages or in their own communities.
▪ Basically, it consistsTraditional caste systems in which roles are assigned at birth and enforced by social sanctions.
▪ In the caste system social closure is achieved through prohibitions which prevent members of a caste from marrying outside their caste.
▪ I abhor smugness, passivity, caste system. write with recent photo.
▪ Buddha was a social reformer who condemned India's caste system.
▪ In the south of India there are up to 20 different castes.
▪ If they married outside their own caste, they could be put to death.
▪ The money was not distributed fairly, but too often financed artificial luxury on the part of a particular caste.
▪ They show remarkable adaptations, from the migrations of birds to the slave-making castes of ants.
▪ This Army caste is oppressing us greatly.
▪ Though caste often performed this stabilizing economic function, its origin was political and its sanction religious.
▪ We are a very strong caste, a gypsy caste.
▪ Women from the Chosa caste would only accept a cook from their caste and above.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Caste \Caste\, n. [Pg. casta race, lineage, fr. L. castus pure, chaste: cf. F. caste, of same origin.]

  1. One of the hereditary classes into which the Hindu are divided according to the laws of Brahmanism.

    Note: The members of the same caste are theoretically of equal rank, and same profession or occupation, and may not eat or intermarry with those not of their own caste. The original are four, viz., the Brahmans, or sacerdotal order; the Kshatriyas, or soldiers and rulers; the Vaisyas, or husbandmen and merchants; and the Sudras, or laborers and mechanics. Men of no caste are Pariahs, outcasts. Numerous mixed classes, or castes, have sprung up in the progress of time.

  2. A separate and fixed order or class of persons in society who chiefly hold intercourse among themselves.

    The tinkers then formed an hereditary caste.

    To lose caste, to be degraded from the caste to which one has belonged; to lose social position or consideration.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1550s, "a race of men," from Latin castus "chaste," from castus "cut off, separated; pure" (via notion of "cut off" from faults), past participle of carere "to be cut off from" (and related to castration), from PIE *kas-to-, from root *kes- "to cut" (cognates: Latin cassus "empty, void"). Originally spelled cast in English and later often merged with cast (n.) in its secondary sense "sort, kind, style." \n

\nApplication to Hindu social groups was picked up by English in India 1610s from Portuguese casta "breed, race, caste," earlier casta raça, "unmixed race," from the same Latin word. The current spelling of of the English word is from this reborrowing. Caste system is first recorded 1840.


n. 1 Any of the hereditary social classes and subclasses of South Asian society. 2 A separate and fixed order or class of persons in society who chiefly associate with each other.

  1. n. social status or position conferred by a system based on class; "lose caste by doing work beneath one's station"

  2. (Hinduism) a hereditary social class among Hindus; stratified according to ritual purity

  3. a social class separated from others by distinctions of hereditary rank or profession or wealth

Caste (disambiguation)

Caste may refer to:

  • Caste, a hereditary system of occupation, endogamy, social culture, social class, and political power in human society
  • Caste (biology)
  • Caste system in India
  • Caste (play), a play by Thomas William Robertson
  • Wine Caste, a system that defines the variety of grapes to make wine.
Caste (play)

Caste is a comedy drama by Thomas William Robertson, first seen in 1867. The play was the third of several successes by Robertson produced in London's West End by Squire Bancroft and his wife Marie Wilton. As its name suggests, Caste concerns distinctions of class and rank. The son of a French nobleman marries a ballet dancer and then goes to war. When word arrives that he has been killed in action, his mother tries to wrest the child from his penniless widow.


Caste is a form of social stratification characterized by endogamy, hereditary transmission of a lifestyle which often includes an occupation, ritual status in a hierarchy and customary social interaction and exclusion based on cultural notions of purity and pollution. Its paradigmatic ethnographic example is the division of Indian society into rigid social groups, with roots in India's ancient history and persisting until today. However, the economic significance of the caste system in India has been declining as a result of urbanization and affirmative action programs. A subject of much scholarship by sociologists and anthropologists, the Indian caste system is sometimes used as an analogical basis for the study of caste-like social divisions existing outside India. The term is also applied to non-human populations like ants and bees.

Usage examples of "caste".

It accepts the four castes and the four types of duties attached to them.

I am sick with worry for you, for the Korrush, for the business, but I am Prime Factor of all the Bashkir caste.

Terai and Bhabar Government Estates, and by reason of the large amount of the milk of human kindness that he was endowed with he had endeared himself to the large population, embracing all castes and creeds, living in the many thousands of square miles of country he ruled over.

The Epic became more popular with the nation at large than dry codes of law and philosophy, and generations of Brahmanical writers laboured therefore to insert in the Epic itself their rules of caste and moral conduct, their laws and philosophy.

Later, with the Hindu shift toward pacifism and nonviolence, the brahmin, or priestly caste, became predominant, with kshatriyas shifting into the second-highest position from around the fifth century A.

The tendency of the new doctrine was to break up the system of caste, and free the people from the galling yoke of the Brahminical hierarchy and dogmas.

This was afterwards, through the influence of the Brahminical priestly caste, suppressed in India, but spread over other parts of Asia, to the islands of the Indian Archipelago, and also to China.

You are instructed to encourage the appropriate castes of the Human Species to decode DNA and increase Altitude and Mobility.

It is probable that we are neuro-logically programmed so that understanding of castes cannot become part of species contelligence until the time for Space Migration occurs.

For obvious reasons Hive philosophers and Establishment Reality-Definers tend to discredit the Pleasure-Aesthetic Castes and the contributions they make to the species.

Although the average psychologist is a good-natured, reasonably progressive person, and although psychologists would be expected to understand human castes and hive-thought-control interventions, the profession is, by and large, amazingly innocent and unconcerned about the fact that it has been controlled by the Federal Bureaucracy for decades.

The Moral Taboo must interfere with some normal, natural caste-behavior -- must perversely prevent some castes from getting something that they neurologically are wired to want.

The order in which castes take over a new energy is fixed: political power caste, engineer commercial caste, moral domesticator caste.

Kasrene and Mosrene, whose mission seemed to be to keep the warriors, politicals, other castes, and neighboring species sufficiently mollified to prevent the sectors bordering the Tholian Assembly from plunging headlong into war.

Tholians of the political, diplomatic, warrior, and worker castes spend a significant percentage of their short lives immersed in the Lattice.