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ghost dance

a ritual dance intended to establish communion with the dead, especially such a dance as performed by various messianic western American Indian cults in the late 19th century.
Origin of ghost dance
An Americanism dating back to 1885-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ghost dance
Historical Examples
  • Coonskin said it was no ghost dance, just a new kind of breakdown.

    On a Donkey's Hurricane Deck R. Pitcher Woodward
  • This must be at once forthcoming, and the ghost dance itself was then resumed.

    Ceremonies of the Pomo Indians Samuel Alfred Barrett
  • The subject staggers into the ring and falls (Mooney, ghost dance, 925-926).

  • On the other hand, the Paiute, from whom the ghost dance was derived, did not hypnotize.

  • Of the ghost dance and its serious import, readers of the daily papers are familiar.

    My Native Land James Cox
  • The ghost dance was indulged in, and the feeling of dread and fear spread all over the Western country.

    The Blue and The Gray A. R. White
  • The old Wickiup was decorated till it looked like a buck rigged for a ghost dance.

    Held for Orders Frank H. Spearman
  • All I have to do is daub a little phosphorus on the dummy and it will be in shape to do the ghost dance.

  • Under the thrall of the ghost dance, devotees dropped to earth insensible and had visions of the spirit-world.

    Trails Through Western Woods Helen Fitzgerald Sanders
  • For more than three months after his arrival thousands of the Sioux warriors kept up the ghost dance almost nightly.

    Thirty Years on the Frontier Robert McReynolds
British Dictionary definitions for ghost dance

ghost dance

a religious dance of certain North American Indians, connected with a political movement (from about 1888) that looked to reunion with the dead and a return to an idealized state of affairs before Europeans came
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
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