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caste

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caste


  2  definitions  found 
 
  From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]: 
 
  Caste  \Caste\,  n.  [Pg.  casta  race,  lineage,  fr  L.  castus  pure, 
  chaste:  cf  F.  caste,  of  same  origin.] 
  1.  One  of  the  hereditary  classes  into  which  the  Hindoos  are 
  divided  according  to  the  laws  of  Brahmanism. 
 
  Note:  The  members  of  the  same  caste  are  theoretically  of 
  equal  rank,  and  same  profession  or  occupation,  and  may 
  not  eat  or  intermarry  with  those  not  of  their  own 
  caste.  The  original  are  four  viz.,  the  Brahmans,  or 
  sacerdotal  order  the  Kshatriyas,  or  soldiers  and 
  rulers;  the  Vaisyas,  or  husbandmen  and  merchants;  and 
  the  Sudras,  or  laborers  and  mechanics.  Men  of  no  caste 
  are  Pariahs,  outcasts.  Numerous  mixed  classes,  or 
  castes,  have  sprung  up  in  the  progress  of  time. 
 
  2.  A  separate  and  fixed  order  or  class  of  persons  in  society 
  who  chiefly  hold  intercourse  among  themselves. 
 
  The  tinkers  then  formed  an  hereditary  caste. 
  --Macaulay. 
 
  {To  lose  caste},  to  be  degraded  from  the  caste  to  which  one 
  has  belonged;  to  lose  social  position  or  consideration. 
 
  From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]: 
 
  caste 
  n  1:  social  status  or  position  conferred  by  a  system  based  on 
  class:  "lose  caste  by  doing  work  beneath  one's  station" 
  2:  (Hindu)  a  hereditary  social  class  stratified  according  to 
  ritual  purity 
  3:  a  social  class  separated  from  others  by  distinctions  of 
  hereditary  rank  or  profession  or  wealth 




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