Try Our Apps


The Best Internet Slang


[noun kur-vit; verb ker-vet, kur-vit] /noun ˈkɜr vɪt; verb kərˈvɛt, ˈkɜr vɪt/
Dressage. a leap of a horse from a rearing position, in which it springs up with the hind legs outstretched as the forelegs descend.
verb (used without object), curvetted or curveted, curvetting or curveting.
to leap in a curvet, as a horse; cause one's horse to do this.
to leap and frisk.
verb (used with object), curvetted or curveted, curvetting or curveting.
to cause to make a curvet.
Origin of curvet
1565-75; earlier curvetto < Italian corvetta < French courbette, equivalent to courb(er) to bend, curve (≪ Latin curvāre; cf. curve) + -ette -ette Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for curvet
Historical Examples
  • His eyes shone with pleasure, and he allowed his horse to curvet freely.

    Before the Dawn Joseph Alexander Altsheler
  • With a curvet the boat from the open rounds up at the ladder.

    Sea and Sardinia D. H. Lawrence
  • The others left at the post fret, and fidget, and curvet about.

  • The cavaliers compel their horses to prance and curvet as they go by some lady of especial favor.

    Life on a Mediaeval Barony William Stearns Davis
  • Next follows the curvet, which is performed by throwing the body suddenly backwards until the hands touch the ground.

    Acrobats and Mountebanks Hugues Le Roux
  • The horses of his body-guard began to paw and curvet to free their feet as the loose reins tightened on their necks.

    The White Blackbird Hudson Douglas
  • They could see him shaking hands, then doing a curvet or so to show off his newly borrowed mount.

    The Covered Wagon Emerson Hough
  • To display his skill before the ladies, he set spurs to his horse, making it bound and curvet "as valiantly as any man could do."

  • So into the court-yard of the inn he rode, with a curvet and a prance, and a despotic shout for the ostler.

    Dust Julian Hawthorne
  • His gentle little mare heard it, though, and began to curvet and prance.

    Short Sixes H. C. Bunner
British Dictionary definitions for curvet


(dressage) a low leap with all four feet off the ground
verb -vets, -vetting, -vetted, -vets, -veting, -veted
(dressage) to make or cause to make such a leap
(intransitive) to prance or frisk about
Word Origin
C16: from Old Italian corvetta, from Old French courbette, from courber to bend, from Latin curvāre
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for curvet

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for curvet

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for curvet