Muṭawwaʿ (مطوّع) (plural muṭawwaʿūn (مطوّعون)) is a word that is used to describe a religious Muslim man. This word is used in Gulf countries in the Middle East (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Kingdom of Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, & Sultanate of Oman), but it may also be used in Yemen, since Yemen and Gulf countries have a lot of cultural similarities. The term was also in use in Tunisia to refer to a holder of a diploma from a religious institution (see below).
The term has also been coopted by self-styled "religious police" (see Muṭawwaʿūn).

Origin of The Word

The term was originally used to describe the holder of the diploma issued by the Great Mosque of Tunis[1]
It also has the meanings of a volunteer, or an unsalaried trainee.

In the past (tens of years ago), this word was used for the man who used to teach children the Qur'an, when there were no schools in the region.


  1. ^ Hans Wehr, page 670

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