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galliard (countable and uncountable, plural galliards)

  1. A lively dance, popular in 16th- and 17th-century Europe
  2. (music) The triple-time music for this dance
  3. (dated) A brisk, merry person.
    • John Cleveland, "The Mixt Assembly" (1647) The character of a London-diurnall with severall select poems, page 36 1647, keyboarded 1687, scanned: “Thus every Gibelline hath got his Guelf ;
      But Selden he's a Galliard by himself ;
      And well may be ; there's more Divines in him ,
      Than in all this their Jewish Sanhedrim ;”
    • 1828, Sir Walter Scott, The Fair Maid of Perth[1]:
      I will be answerable that this galliard meant but some St. Valentine's jest.
    • 1953, Saul Bellow, chapter 5, in The Adventures of Augie March:
      He was still an old galliard, with white Buffalo Bill vandyke, and he swanked around, still healthy of flesh, in white suits, looking things over with big sex-amused eyes.
  4. (uncountable, Continental printing, dated) An intermediate size of type alternatively equated with brevier (by Didot points) or bourgeois (by Fournier points and by size).


See also[edit]


galliard (comparative more galliard, superlative most galliard)

  1. gay; brisk; active