bharata natya

noun bhar·a·ta na·tya \¦bər-ə-tə-ˈnä-tyə\
variants: or

bharata natyam


Definition of bharata natya

  1. :  a traditional Indian dance formerly exclusively performed by devadasis — compare kathak, kathakali, manipuri

Love words? You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Join MWU now and get access to America’s largest dictionary, with:

  • 300,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Origin and Etymology of bharata natya

Sanskrit bharatanāṭya, literally, Bharata's dancing, from Bharata, a sage reputed to be the author of the Natyashastra, a manual of dramatic art + -nāṭya dramatic art, dancing — more at natya

First Known Use: 1944

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up bharata natya? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a rounded knoll or a ridge of ice

Get Word of the Day daily email!