belly dance

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See also: bellydance and belly-dance


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Alternative forms[edit]


Calque of French danse du ventre, equivalent to belly +‎ dance. First attested in English in 1889, in an article about that year's Exposition Universelle in Paris in the November 22 edition of the Yorkshire Factory Times: "A café in the Rue du Caire attracted 2,000 spectators daily to see the ‘belly dance’, and realised a total of 400,000 francs."[1] Early sources also used the French term danse du ventre as-is.[1][2]


belly dance (countable and uncountable, plural belly dances)

  1. A form of dance originating in the Middle East and characterized by movements of the torso.



belly dance (third-person singular simple present belly dances, present participle belly dancing, simple past and past participle belly danced)

  1. To perform a belly dance.

Derived terms[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Hawthorn, Ainsley (May 2019). "Middle Eastern Dance and What We Call It." Dance Research 37 (1): 1-17.
  2. ^ Morrow, W.C. (1899). Bohemian Paris of Today

Further reading[edit]