sword dance


: a dance performed by men in a circle holding a sword in the right hand and grasping the tip of a neighbor's sword in the left hand
: a dance performed over or around swords
sword dancer noun

Examples of sword dance in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Trump chose Saudi Arabia as his first foreign travel destination, accepting a thick gold medal from the king, swaying along to a sword dance and touching a giant glowing orb as part of a lavish extravaganza that became emblematic of his fealty to the kingdom. Noah Bierman, Los Angeles Times, 15 July 2022 That trip was highlighted by a mystifying photo op of the leaders gathered around a glowing orb and Trump briefly joining a ceremonial sword dance. Ellen Knickmeyer, Chris Megerian, Aamer Madhani, Anchorage Daily News, 15 July 2022 That visit was highlighted by the leaders gathered around a glowing orb and Trump briefly joining a ceremonial sword dance. Aamer Madhani, BostonGlobe.com, 15 July 2022 Highland dance competitions include the Highland Fling, Scottish Reel, Ghillie Callum solo sword dance, and Sailor’s Hornpipe, along with the Scottish Lilt and Flora MacDonald’s Fancy, one of the Scottish National dances. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 June 2022 As part of the celebration, men and boys were already updating a traditional sword dance with new break-dance moves. New York Times, 24 Apr. 2022 Meanwhile, Hitch did a kind of verbal sword dance around me. Margaret Atwood, The Atlantic, 1 Apr. 2022 The matachin was an all-male sword dance that became popular in sixteenth-century Europe; Hay pictured its practitioners as ambiguous shamans, comparable to two-spirit beings in Native American tradition. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 25 June 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sword dance.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1604, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of sword dance was in 1604

Dictionary Entries Near sword dance

Cite this Entry

“Sword dance.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sword%20dance. Accessed 28 May. 2024.

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