A hegira is a journey to escape something. More loosely, a hegira is someone's departure, especially when it's a large group of people all leaving at once for the same reason.
The first hegira was when the Islamic prophet Muhammad escaped to another city because someone was planning to assassinate him. So, when you talk about a hegira now, you're giving a serious (or mock-serious) tone to whatever departure or escape you're talking about.
hidge EYE ruh
Part of speech:
(Countable nouns, like “bottle,” “piece,” and “decision,” are words for things that can be broken into exact units. You talk about “a bottle,” “three pieces,” and “many decisions.”
Likewise, talk about one hegira or multiple hegiras.)
How to use it:
Talk about someone's hegira from or to somewhere, or both, as in "her hegira from the States to Puerto Rico." Or, talk about someone making a hegira (or making his/her/their hegira,) or someone making a hegira from or to some place. Often it's a whole group of people making a hegira: "the Pilgrims made their hegira."
Your meaning might be quite serious ("his family's hegira from the war-ravaged home country") or very casual ("the customers' hegira from their increasingly crummy Internet service provider.")
I always imagine the Gold Rush as a massive and sad attempt at a hegira from ordinary life.
Many regions in our country owe their unique culture to one or more historical hegiras: were it not for all the Czechs who flocked to Texas starting in the 1840's, for example, Houstonians wouldn't have their beloved kolaches for breakfast.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "hegira" means when you can explain it without saying "exodus" or "when people leave."
Think of a time you had to leave a place, a job, a school, or a relationship, and fill in the blanks: "_____ was the chief reason for my hegira from _____."
Example: "Boredom--doing the same things over and over in the same little corner of the store--was the chief reason for my hegira from retail work to restaurant work back in college."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
This month, we're playing with song lyrics that include words featured in issues of Make Your Point. I’ll give you a few lines from the song, with a blank where our word appears, along with its definition. See if you can come up with it! You can follow the link to see the right answer right away, or just wait until the following day’s issue. Have fun!
Yesterday's lyrics: Artist: Elton John Title: Take This Dirty Water Lyrics: Take this dirty water
Help to keep it clean
Get back to the _____
Purify the stream Definition: a place where water pops up from the ground, or a source or supply of something that is rich, abundant, and maybe even infinite.
Try this last one today:
Artist: The Decembrists Title: The Legionnaire's Lament Lyrics: I am on reprieve
Lacking my ____________
Missing my gay Paris
In this desert dry Definition: joy of being alive
John Adams: “No man who ever held the office of president would congratulate a friend on obtaining it.”
1. The opposite of MAKING A HEGIRA is
A. STAYING YOUNG
B. STAYING TRUE
C. STAYING PUT
2. The narrator of the show romanticizes this "annual hegira of _____," describing their movements poetically.
A. lounging lizards
B. migrating birds
C. hibernating bears
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.