black bottom


Definition of black bottom

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 sometimes capitalized both Bs : a tract of low-lying land with black soil
2 often capitalized both Bs [probably from black bottom “low-lying section of a southern town occupied primarily by black people”] : an American dance popular from 1926 to 1928 with sinuous movements of the hips and rocking steps


intransitive verb

Definition of black-bottom (Entry 2 of 2)

: to dance the black bottom

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.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

History and Etymology for black bottom

Intransitive verb

black bottom

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about black bottom

Statistics for black bottom

Cite this Entry

“Black bottom.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.

Comments on black bottom

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!