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Shri (Devanagari: श्री, IAST; Śrī), also transliterated as Sree or Sri or Shree is a word of Sanskrit origin, used in the Indian subcontinent as a polite form of address equivalent to the English "Mr." or "Ms." in written and spoken language, or as a title of veneration for deities (usually translated as "Holy").
In Sanskrit grammar, Shri has the feminine gender. It is gender-specific in Sanskrit, but the assumption that it is masculine has resulted in the titles of Shrimati (abbreviated Smt) for married women and Sushri for women (independent of marital status).
Shri (also Sree, Sri, Shree, श्री) is a polite form of address equivalent to the English "Mr." or "Ms." The title is derived from Sanskrit श्रीमान् (śrīmān). This use may stem from the Puranic conception of prosperity.
Śhrī 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, Śhrī if used by itself and not followed by any name then it 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 as the supreme goddess, while "Sri" or "Shri" is used to address humans.
Śhrī is one of the names of Ganesha, the Hindu god of prosperity.
Shri may be repeated up to five times, depending on the status of the person, see Shri Shri. E.g. king Birendra of Nepal was addressed as Shri paanch (shri x5) as in Shri paanch ko sarkaar (His majesty's government).
Shri, along with the forms Shrimati (for married women, equivalent to English Mrs.) and Sushri, is often used by Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs and Jains as a respectful affix to the names of celebrated or revered persons.
There is a common practice of writing Śhrī 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 Sri, Desai Shri, and Thakur Sri 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.
|Language/Script||Śrī written as||Notes|
|Indonesian||Sri||Often used as a title of veneration, however "Sri" also the name of ancient Java rice goddess Dewi Sri and also for royal usage such as "Sri Bhaginda", etc.|
|Javanese||ꦱꦿꦶ (Sri, conjuct form may not be shown properly)||Javanese language treats it as a common part of names in, for example, the name of former Indonesian finance minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati.|
|Myanmar||သီရိ (thiri)||See Tamil below.|
|Tamil||ஸ்ரீ (Shre or Shree)||Its Tamil equivalent (Thiru) is also used.|
|Thai||ศิริ (Siri) and ศรี (Sri or Si)||Thai place names below.|
The honorific is incorporated into many place names. A partial list:
śhrīˊ 12708 śhrīˊ feminine ' light, beauty ' R̥gveda, ' welfare, riches ' Avestan (Iranian) Pali Prakrit sirī – feminine, Prakrit sī – feminine ' prosperity '; Marāṭhī – s honorific affix to names of relationship (e.g. āj̈ā – s, ājī – 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 śrḗyas – , śrḗṣṭha – . See Addenda: śrīˊ – occurring for the first time in Addenda : śrīparṇī – .
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-ṣmī, the wife of Viṣṇu;... -7 Any virtue or excellence. -8 Decoration. -9 Intellect, understanding. -1 Super- human power. -11 The three objects of human existence taken collectively (धर्म, अर्थ and काम). -12 The Sarala tree. -13 The Bilva tree. -14 Cloves. -15 A lotus. -16 The twelfth digit of the moon. -17 N. of Sarasvatī, (the goddess of speech). -18 Speech. -19 Fame, glory. -2 The three Vedas (वेदत्रयी);... -m. N. of one of the six Rāgas or musical modes. -a. Splendid, radiant, adorning. (The word श्री is often used as an honorific prefix to the names of deities and eminent persons; श्रीकृष्णः, श्रीरामः, श्रिवाल्मीकिः, श्रीजयदेवः; also celebrated works, generally of a sacred character; श्रीभागवत, श्रीरामायण)&c.; it is also used as an auspicious sign at the commencement of letters, manuscripts &c