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From the Sanskrit देवदासी (devá-dāsī, female servant of a deity), from देव (devá, deity, god) and दासी (dāsī, a female servant or slave).


devadasi (plural devadasis)

  1. (Hinduism) A girl that underwent Hindu religious practice in which they would be "married" to a deity. In addition to taking care of the temple, she learned and practiced Bharatanatyam and other classical Indian arts traditions, and enjoyed a high social status.
    • 2017, Sunil Khilnani, Incarnations, Penguin 2017, p. 372:
      It would be a century before the daughter of another devadasi mesmerized audiences around the world.

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