Try Our Apps


Famous Last Words


[pol-uh-neyz, poh-luh-] /ˌpɒl əˈneɪz, ˌpoʊ lə-/
a slow dance of Polish origin, in triple meter, consisting chiefly of a march or promenade in couples.
a piece of music for, or in the rhythm of, such a dance.
Also, polonese
[pol-uh-neez, -nees, poh-luh-] /ˌpɒl əˈniz, -ˈnis, ˌpoʊ lə-/ (Show IPA)
. a coatlike outer dress, combining bodice and cutaway overskirt, worn in the late 18th century over a separate skirt.
Origin of polonaise
1765-75; < French, feminine of polonais Polish, equivalent to Polon- (< Medieval Latin Polonia Poland) + -ais -ese Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for polonaise
Historical Examples
  • This polonaise appears as op. 71 in the collection of posthumous works.

    Frederic Chopin, v. 1 (of 2) Moritz Karasowski
  • The polonaise ended the ball, and my mother sent us all off to sleep.

  • It seemed to her, that polonaise of Chopin, the most immoral music, the music of defiance and revolt.

    The Helpmate May Sinclair
  • The men began to choose partners and take their places for the polonaise.

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • I have written a polonaise, which I must leave here with Wrfel.

    Frederic Chopin, Vol II (of 2) Moritz Karasowski
  • I remind you once more of the polonaise; please send it by return.

    Frederic Chopin, v. 1 (of 2) Moritz Karasowski
  • In a word, the polonaise represents, both in its subject and the style of music, the masculine side of Chopin's genius.

  • His remarks on the polonaise and Mazourka are full of the philosophy and essence of history.

    Life of Chopin Franz Liszt
  • A young and robust pianist had been playing Chopin's "polonaise Militaire" to the composer, and had broken a string.

  • To hear him in a Chopin polonaise is to realise his limitations.

    Franz Liszt James Huneker
British Dictionary definitions for polonaise


a ceremonial marchlike dance in three-four time from Poland
a piece of music composed for or in the rhythm of this dance
a woman's costume with a tight bodice and an overskirt drawn back to show a decorative underskirt
Word Origin
C18: from French danse polonaise Polish dance
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 Origin and History for polonaise

1773, "woman's overdress" (from fancied resemblance to Polish costume); 1797, "stately dance," from French (danse) polonaise "a Polish (dance)," fem. of polonais (adj.) "Polish," from Pologne "Poland," from Medieval Latin Polonia "Poland" (see Poland). In the culinary sense, applied to dishes supposed to be cooked in Polish style, attested from 1889.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for polonaise

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for polonaise

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for polonaise