Shri (;Devanagari, ISO: ?r?, Sanskrit pronunciation: [?ri:], Non-Sanskrit pronunciation: [sri:]), also transliterated as Shree, Sri, or Sree, is an Indian word denoting wealth and prosperity, primarily used as an honorific.
The word is widely used in South and Southeast Asian languages such as Indonesian Javanese, Balinese, Sinhala, Thai, Tamil, Telugu, Hindi, Nepali, Malayalam, Kannada, Sanskrit, Pali and Malay. It is transliterated as Sri, Sree, Shri, Si, or Seri based on the local convention for transliteration.
The term is used in Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia as a polite form of address equivalent to the English "Mr." or "Ms." in written and spoken language, but also as a title of veneration for deities.
Monier-Williams Dictionary gives the meaning of the root verb ?r? as "to cook, boil, to burn, diffuse light", but as a feminine abstract noun, it has received a general meaning of "grace, splendour, beauty; wealth, affluence, prosperity".
The word ?r? may also be used as an adjective in Sanskrit, which is the origin of the modern use of shri as a title. From the noun, is derived the Sanskrit adjective "?r?mat" (?rim?n in the masculine nominative singular, ?r?mat? in the feminine), by adding the suffix indicating possession, literally "radiance-having" (person, god, etc). This is used in modern vernacular as form of address Shrimati (abbreviated Smt) for married women, while Sushri, (with "su", "good", added to the beginning), can be used for women in general (regardless of marital status).
In Devanagari script for Sanskrit, Hindi, Marathi and other languages, the word ⟨?⟩ is combination of three sounds: (?), (r) and ? (?, long i). There are two conventions in India to transliterate the syllable ? (ISO: ?a) (i.e., (?) with the inherent vowel ? (a); (?) + ? (a)) to English. Some use the convention of sa for transcribing ? as in Sri Lanka and Srinagar, while others use the convention of sha for transcribing ? as in Shimla and Shimoga. Similarly, (r?; + ?) is also transliterated to English in two different ways as ri and ree, although the latter is non-standard. Hence, in English, the spelling of this word ? varies from Shri (the standard spelling) to Shree through Sri and Sree. Whatever be the transliteration, the pronunciation is the same. Sanskrit is written in many Indian scripts as well, in which case there are corresponding letters which have the exact same values as the Devanagari, so the Sanskrit pronunciation remains the same regardless of script.
Shri is also frequently used as an epithet of some Hindu gods, in which case it is often translated into English as Holy. Also, in language and general usage, Shri, if used by itself and not followed by any name, refers to the supreme consciousness, i.e. God.
Shri Devi (or in short Shri, another name of Lakshmi, consort of Vishnu) is the devi (goddess) of wealth according to Hindu beliefs. Among today's orthodox Vaishnavas, the English word "Shree" is a revered syllable and is used to refer to Lakshmi, while "Sri" or "Shri" is used to address humans.
Shri is one of the names of Ganesha, the Hindu god of prosperity.
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Shri may be repeated depending on the status of the person.
There is a common practice of writing Shri as the first word centralised in line at the beginning of a document.
Another usage is as an emphatic compound (which can be used several times: shri shri, or shri shri shri, etc.) in princely styles, notably in Darbar Shri, Desai Shri, and Thakur Shri or Shrii Shrii Anandamurti, the founder of the social and spiritual movement Ananda Marga (the Path of Bliss).
The honorific can also be applied to objects and concepts that are widely respected, such as the Sikh religious text, the Shri Guru Granth Sahib. Similarly, when the Ramlila tradition of reenacting the Ramayana is referred to as an institution, the term Shri Ramlila is frequently used.
The use of the term is common in the names of ragas (musical motifs), either as a prefix or postfix. Some examples are Shree, Bhagyashree, Dhanashree, Jayashree, Subhashree, Itishree, Jiteshree, and Shree ranjani.
|Language/Script||Shri written as||Notes|
|Burmese||? (thiri)||See Tamil below.|
|Filipino||? ( Sri or Sree )||Formerly used as an honorific title for rulers in old Indianized pre-Hispanic kingdoms and rajahnates in the Philippines, such as Sri Lumay of the Rajahnate of Cebu or Sri Bata Shaja of the Rajahnate of Butuan.|
|Indonesian||Sri or Sree||Often used as a title of veneration; however "Sri" is also the name of the ancient Javan rice goddess Dewi Sri. It is also used as a royal title such as "Sri Bhaginda", etc. "Sri" can also be used as part of a proper name, usually by Javanese people, such as "Sri Rahayu", "Ibu Sri" (Mrs. Sri), "Sri Agung", "Sri Padma Kenchana", etc.|
|Javanese||(Sri or Sree) alternatively written as or||Often used to address royal or venerated figures, such as "Sri Bhaginda" (equivalent to "your majesty), and for names of deities, such as the ancient Javan rice goddess Dewi Sri. In modern Javanese, it is a common part of proper names, eg. the name of former Indonesian finance minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati. "Sri" is also used as a name for things other than people, such as the Indonesian bus companies "Sri Rahayu" and "Sri Padma Kenchana".|
|Kannada||? (Sri or Sree)|
|Khmer||? (Srey) and ? (Serey)|
|Lao||(Si) and (Sri or Sree)|
|Malay||(Seri)||Used for honorific titles in Malay kingdoms and sultanates. This includes the honorific title for the Sultan of Brunei: Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Paduka Seri Baginda Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah. It is also used for the name of places such as Bandar Seri Begawan|
|Malayalam||? (Sri or Sree)|
|Sinhala||(Sri or Sree) also ? (Sri or Sree) or ? (Siri)||Meaning "resplendent", as in Sri Lanka, "Resplendent Island".|
|Tamil||? (Sri or Sree)||The Tamil equivalent Thiru is also used.|
|Telugu||? (Sri or Sree)|
|Thai||? (Siri) and (Sri or Sree or Si)||Used in many Thai place names, as seen below.|
|Vietnamese/Cham||Ch?||Vietnamese transcription of honorific name prefix used among the Cham ethnic minority.|
The honorific is incorporated into many place names. A partial list follows:
?hr 12708 ?hr feminine ' light, beauty ' R?gveda, ' welfare, riches ' Avestan (Iranian) Pali Prakrit sir? – feminine, Prakrit s? – feminine ' prosperity '; Marh? – s honorific affix to names of relationship (e.g. ?j – s, ?j? – s) Jules Bloch La Formation de la Langue Marathe Paris 1920, page 412. – Sinhalese siri ' health, happiness ' (Wilhelm Geiger An Etymological Glossary of the Sinhalese Language Colombo 1941, page 180) a loanword from Pali <-> See addendum ?r?yas –, ?rha – . See Addendar – occurring for the first time in Addenda r?par – .
1 Wealth, riches, affluence, prosperity, plenty; ... -2 Royalty, majesty, royal wealth;... -3 Dignity, high position, state;... -4 Beauty, grace, splendour, lustre;... -5 Colour, aspect; ... -6 The goddess of wealth, Lak-?m?, the wife of Viu;... -7 Any virtue or excellence. -8 Decoration. -9 Intellect, understanding. -1 Super- human power. -11 The three objects of human existence taken collectively (?, ? and ). -12 The Sarala tree. -13 The Bilva tree. -14 Cloves. -15 A lotus. -16 The twelfth digit of the moon. -17 N. of Sarasvat?, (the goddess of speech). -18 Speech. -19 Fame, glory. -2 The three Vedas ();... -m. N. of one of the six R?gas or musical modes. -a. Splendid, radiant, adorning. (The word ? is often used as an honorific prefix to the names of deities and eminent persons; ?, , ?, ?; also celebrated works, generally of a sacred character; , ?)&c.; it is also used as an auspicious sign at the commencement of letters, manuscripts &c
... ISO 15919 ... There is no evidence of the use of the system either in India or in international cartographic products ... The Hunterian system is the actually used national system of romanization in India ...