Definition of Salafi in English:



  • A member of a strictly orthodox Sunni Muslim sect advocating a return to the early Islam of the Koran and Sunna.

    • ‘But on the ground, their own sectarianism and fanatical puritanism often lead the Salafi to reject or alienate those who might otherwise be their allies.’
    • ‘The second tendency is represented by the Salafis, a global movement driven by a desire for religious purification.’
    • ‘Militant Salafis object to Muslims shaving their beards.’
    • ‘Sufis are typically more peaceful and less rigid than Salafis or Wahhabis, though there are militantly anti-Western Sufi leaders, as well.’
    • ‘Most are peaceful, but some Salafis have turned radical and take up arms, just as there were violent Lutheran peasant rebellions in early modern Europe.’


Arabic, from salaf ‘predecessor’, ‘forebear’.