AskDefine | Define zarf

The Collaborative Dictionary

Zarf \Zarf\, n. [Ar.] (Art) A metallic cuplike stand used for holding a finjan. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

Word Net

zarf n : an ornamental metal cup-shaped holder for a hot coffee cup

English

Etymology

From zarf < ẓarf, "container"

Noun

  1. an ornamental container designed to hold a coffee cup and insulate it from the hand of the imbiber

Albanian

Etymology

From zarf < ẓarf, "container"

Noun

zarf g Albanian

Turkish

Noun

  1. adverb (lexical category)
A Zarf is a holder, usually of ornamental metal, for a coffee cup without a handle.http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/zarf
Although coffee was probably discovered in Ethiopia, it was in Turkey at around the 13th century that it became popular as a beverage. As with the serving of tea in China and Japan, the serving of coffee in Turkey was a complex, ritualised process. It was served in small cups without handles, which were placed in holders known as zarf (from the Arabic word, meaning container, envelope) to protect the cup and also the fingers of the drinker from the hot fluid. Cups were typically made of porcelain, but also of glass and wood, however since it was the holder that was more visible, it was typically more heavily ornamented.

Styles

The zarf was often made from metal, with silver, gold, copper and brass being the most common materials used. Others were also made of woods such as coconut, ebony or other hardwoods, or of ivory, bone, horn or tortoiseshell.
Metal zarf were sometimes filigree work, sometimes decorated with chasing, niello, engraving, or set with gems or other precious stones.
Wooden zarf, very few of which remain, were favoured because of the natural aroma of the wood from which they were fashioned. They were very fragile, but also very beautiful.
Tortoiseshell, horn and ivory zarf required special skill to make. In the first two cases, sheets of the material in question were softened in hot water and then clamped in a mold to create the required shape. Ivory was carved in the same way as wood; however, its greater value meant that more care was needed to avoid mistakes.
The US Navy also has an item, usually made in the on-base metal shops that is bolted to bulkheads and consoles to hold coffee cups. The Navy zarf is very plain and utilitarian.
On 28 May 1997, the American National Security Agency declassified the codeword ZARF. It referred to an Air Force tiger team project that tested Multics security in 1973.

See also

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