Word of the DayFriday, December 07, 2012
\HOU-duh\ , noun;
(In the East Indies) a seat or platform for one or more persons, commonly with a railing and a canopy, placed on the back of an elephant.
Above the musket smoke and the gritty dust that was drifting over the battlefield, he saw the howdahs of some of Hemu's war elephants approaching.
-- Alex Rutherford, Ruler of the World
Now she made a picture of an elephant, with four lines for the howdah, in which was seated a princess wearing a crown.
-- Qurratulʻain Ḥaidar, "The Housing Society," The Sound of Falling Leaves
Howdah has both Hindi and Arabic origins, both referring to the load carried by an elephant or camel: haudah in Hindi, and haudaj in Arabic.
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