ablution(s)

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sb70012

Senior Member
Azerbaijani/Persian
Hello,
We Muslims wash some parts of our hands, face and wipe our head and feet with our wet hands. We do it before praying.
Without that we are not allowed to say prayer in the mosque. What's that called in English? I need the word.
Is it "ablution"? :confused:

Thank you
 
  • sb70012

    Senior Member
    Azerbaijani/Persian
    1. We Muslims do ablutions before praying.
    2. We Muslims perform ablutions before praying.
    3. We Muslims do our ablutions before praying.
    4. We Muslims perform our ablutions before praying.

    Hello again,
    In my opinion only 2 is ok and the others are not acceptable. What's your opinion?

    Thank you
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I don't have a problem with 1)
    3) and 4) seem to be setting up to make a contrast with "your" ablutions (... but you Martians do your ablutions after praying.).
    "Our" doesn't add anything to it otherwise as you can't very well be doing someone else's ablutions.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Ablution is a great word. In Australia, for example, the washroom facilities at campgrounds are known as "ablution blocks."

    On the other hand, it's not a particularly common word in AE.

    We (AE) would not say at a dinner party, for example, "excuse me, please, I have to go perform an ablution." :D
     

    Tyrion Lann

    Senior Member
    INDIA -Hindi
    Ablution:- the act of washing yourself:
    Ablution is part of some religious ceremonies.

    Ablutions
    [ plural ] humorous
    Your ablutions are the things you do when you wash yourself:
    I need to perform my ablutions!

    @ Cambridge Dictionary
    Why has ablutions been referred as a humorous word by Cambridge Dictionary?
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    In the second sense, in addition to being formal/pompous, it can be a humorous euphemism for things that you do in the bathroom (including non-cleaning things).
    I woke up, got out of bed, and performed my morning ablutions.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Why has ablutions been referred as a humorous word by Cambridge Dictionary?
    To understand this, which is an accurate comment, you need to have some concept of English. Bennymix explains above. However, there are many words that simply sound humorous that are only humorous in a given context.

    You must understand that English is heavily dependent upon context - a word may be an insult or great praise depending upon the context in which it is said: so it is with "ablution" - ablution was used in the 19th century as a euphemism for urinating or defecating as well as washing. In the religious sense, it is not humorous at all - it is the appropriate noun.
     
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