war dance


: a dance performed (as by American Indians) in preparation for battle or in celebration of victory

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Additionally, 40 students with Tongan heritage from Euless Trinity High School will attend the summit, some of whom will perform Sipi Tau, a Tongan war dance, as part of the event. Dallas News, 21 Apr. 2022 The men’s fancy war dance Shirley performs, meanwhile, is from the Ponca and Comanche tribes. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 10 Nov. 2021 The haka, a ceremonial war dance performed before events including New Zealand rugby matches, is intended as a challenge to opponents and a rallying cry before heading into battle. Rob Picheta, CNN, 12 May 2021 In Brisbane, organizers said about 30,000 people gathered, while a Maori group also did a traditional haka, or war dance. NBC News, 6 June 2020 The haka is a war dance traditionally used on the battlefield and to show a tribe’s pride, strength and unity. NBC News, 6 June 2020 This shocking development fuels Hate Trump, Inc.’s latest war dance. Deroy Murdock, National Review, 17 Apr. 2020 One of the students took off his shirt and the teens started to do a haka — a war dance of New Zealand’s indigenous Maori culture, made famous by the country’s national rugby team. Jeffrey Collins, The Seattle Times, 22 Jan. 2019 Its blue metal body lurches forward, only to be yanked backward again and again—a slapstick war dance for an unwinnable war. Andrea K. Scott, The New Yorker, 21 Apr. 2018 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'war 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

1711, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of war dance was in 1711

Dictionary Entries Near war dance

Cite this Entry

“War dance.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/war%20dance. Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

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