[ buh-lair-oh, boh- ]
/ bəˈlɛər oʊ, boʊ- /

noun, plural bo·le·ros.

a lively Spanish dance in triple meter.
the music for this dance.
a jacket ending above or at the waistline, with or without collar, lapel, and sleeves, worn open in front.

Nearby words

  1. boldly,
  2. boldo,
  3. boldrewood,
  4. bole,
  5. bolection,
  6. boletic acid,
  7. boletus,
  8. boleyn,
  9. boleyn, anne,
  10. bolger

Origin of bolero

Borrowed into English from Spanish around 1780–90 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for bolero

British Dictionary definitions for bolero


/ (bəˈlɛərəʊ) /

noun plural -ros

a Spanish dance, often accompanied by the guitar and castanets, usually in triple time
a piece of music composed for or in the rhythm of this dance
(also ˈbɒlərəʊ) a kind of short jacket not reaching the waist, with or without sleeves and open at the front: worn by men in Spain and by women elsewhere

Word Origin for bolero

C18: from Spanish; perhaps related to bola ball

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

Word Origin and History for bolero



kind of Spanish dance, 1787, from Spanish, probably from bola "ball" (and perhaps with reference to "whirling motion"), from Latin bulla (see bull (n.2)). In reference to a type of short jacket, it is recorded by 1864.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper