a sinuous Hawaiian native dance with intricate arm movements that tell a story in pantomime, usually danced to rhythmic drumming and accompanied by chanting.

Nearby words

  1. huitzilopochtli,
  2. huizhou,
  3. huizinga,
  4. huizinga, johan,
  5. huk,
  6. hula hoop,
  7. hula skirt,
  8. hula-hoop,
  9. hula-hula,
  10. huldre

Origin of hula

Borrowed into English from Hawaiian around 1815–25

Also called hu·la-hu·la. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for hula

British Dictionary definitions for hula




a Hawaiian dance performed by a woman

Word Origin for hula

from Hawaiian

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 hula



"traditional dance of Hawaii," 1825, from Hawaiian. As a verb from 1952. Hula hoop first recorded in fall of 1958, when it was a craze; so called from resemblance of motions of one using it to the dancers' hip circles.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper