cav·​al·​cade | \ ˌka-vəl-ˈkād How to pronounce cavalcade (audio) , ˈka-vəl-ˌkād\

Definition of cavalcade

1a : a procession (see procession entry 1 sense 1) of riders or carriages
b : a procession of vehicles or ships
2 : a dramatic sequence or procession : series a cavalcade of natural disasters

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Synonyms for cavalcade


armada, caravan, fleet, line, motorcade, train

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The History of Cavalcade

When cavalcade was first used in English, it meant "a horseback ride" or "a march or raid made on horseback." Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon, used it this way in his 1647 History of the Rebellion and Civil Wars in England: "He had with some Troops, made a Cavalcade or two into the West." From there came the "procession of riders" meaning and eventual applications to processions in a broader sense. Cavalcade came to English via French from the Old Italian noun cavalcata, which in turn came from an Old Italian verb, cavalcare, meaning "to go on horseback." Ultimately, these words came from the Latin word caballus, meaning "horse." The combining form cade also appears in other words describing particular kinds of processions, such as motorcade or the less common aquacade.

Examples of cavalcade in a Sentence

The cavalcade arrived at the hotel. a cavalcade of antique cars a cavalcade of natural disasters
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Recent Examples on the Web

The months leading up to the show have seen a cavalcade of launches and initiatives from Ralph Lauren. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "At a Celeb-Filled 50th Anniversary Show, Ralph Lauren Was Back on Top, Doubters Be Damned," 10 Sep. 2018 Joining the cavalcade of Falcons, Glendale junior pitcher Aurora Funaro and senior third baseman Britney Figueroa of Hoover garnered first-team nods. Grant Gordon,, "Crescenta Valley softball's Hernandez' phenomenal freshman year leads to league pitcher of year award," 20 June 2018 Families set out camping chairs in the shade of tall trees, sat on the curb or gathered on porches to watch the cavalcade. Cortlynn Stark, Hana Muslic, Katie Bernard And Edward Mckinley, kansascity, "From Prairie Village to Parkville, KC area celebrates the Fourth," 4 July 2018 Within days of that story being publicized by The San Diego Union-Tribune, a cavalcade of other alleged victims came forward. Jeff Mcdonald,, "18th woman claim makes claim against Fischer," 25 June 2018 This fact was not lost on rap fans, as evidenced by a cavalcade of Twitter memes suggesting that beef might still be on the menu. Anchorage Daily News, "A guide to Beyonce and Jay-Z’s surprise joint album ‘Everything is Love’," 18 June 2018 Amy Schumer The comedian joined the cavalcade of celebrities sharing old photos of themselves with their pops. Tyler Mccarthy, Fox News, "Celebrities celebrate Father's Day 2018 on social media," 18 June 2018 Danny Coulombe was the latest in a cavalcade of relievers tasked with cleaning the mess Paul Blackburn left. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Evan almighty: Gattis goes on another rampage as Astros wallop Athletics," 14 June 2018 June 9 Blue Lamp Sabi Kendrick, Jessica White Cloud, Aimee Gruber and Kristen Vacketta provide a quartet of vocal firepower smoldering over a cavalcade of jubilant brass and funky guitars to form the 11-piece ‘60s soul machine the Inciters. Aaron Davis, sacbee, "LA rocker Kaz Mirblouk heads up list of upcoming must-see shows," 8 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cavalcade.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cavalcade

1644, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for cavalcade

French, ride on horseback, from Old Italian cavalcata, from cavalcare to go on horseback, from Late Latin caballicare, from Latin caballus horse; akin to Greek kaballeion horse, Middle Irish capall workhorse

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Statistics for cavalcade

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for cavalcade

The first known use of cavalcade was in 1644

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More Definitions for cavalcade



English Language Learners Definition of cavalcade

: a line of riders, vehicles, etc., moving along in the same direction
literary : a series of related things


cav·​al·​cade | \ ˌka-vəl-ˈkād How to pronounce cavalcade (audio) \

Kids Definition of cavalcade

1 : a procession especially of riders or carriages
2 : a dramatic series (as of related events)

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More from Merriam-Webster on cavalcade

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cavalcade

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cavalcade

Spanish Central: Translation of cavalcade

Nglish: Translation of cavalcade for Spanish Speakers

Comments on cavalcade

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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