[ puh-vahn, -van; French pa-van ]
/ pəˈvɑn, -ˈvæn; French paˈvan /

noun, plural pa·vanes [puh-vahnz, -vanz; French pa-van] /pəˈvɑnz, -ˈvænz; French paˈvan/.

a stately dance dating from the 16th century.
the music for this dance.

Nearby words

  1. pause,
  2. pautrier's microabscess,
  3. pav,
  4. pavage,
  5. pavan,
  6. pavarotti,
  7. pavarotti, luciano,
  8. pave,
  9. pave the way,
  10. pavel petrovich

Also pav·an [pav-uh n, puh-vahn, -van] /ˈpæv ən, pəˈvɑn, -ˈvæn/, pavin.

Origin of pavane

1525–35; < Middle French < Italian pavana, contraction of padovana (feminine) of Padua (Italian Padova) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pavan

British Dictionary definitions for pavan



/ (pəˈvɑːn, -ˈvæn, ˈpævən) /


a slow and stately dance of the 16th and 17th centuries
a piece of music composed for or in the rhythm of this dance, usually characterized by a slow stately triple time

Word Origin for pavane

C16 pavan, via French from Spanish pavana, from Old Italian padovana Paduan (dance), from Padova Padua

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 pavan



"slow, stately dance," 1530s, from French pavane (1520s), probably from Spanish pavana, from pavo "peacock" (from Latin pavo), in reference to the bird's courting movements. But some see an Italian origin and trace the name to Padovana "Paduan." Possibly there was a merger of two distinct dance words.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper