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Dance for four couples in square formation, fashionable from the late 18th through the 19th century. Imported to England from Parisian ballrooms in 1815, it consisted of four or five contredanses (seecountry dance), each danced with prescribed combinations of intertwining figures rather than depending on intricate individual steps. It was often danced to opera melodies. See also American square dance.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on quadrille, visit Britannica.com.