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rumba

or rhum·ba

[ruhm-buh, roo m-, room-]
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noun, plural rum·bas [ruhm-buh z, roo m-, room-] /ˈrʌm bəz, ˈrʊm-, ˈrum-/.
  1. a dance, Cuban in origin and complex in rhythm.
  2. an imitation or adaptation of this dance in the U.S.
  3. music for this dance or in its rhythm.
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verb (used without object), rum·baed [ruhm-buh d, roo m-, room-] /ˈrʌm bəd, ˈrʊm-, ˈrum-/, rum·ba·ing [ruhm-buh-ing, roo m-, room-] /ˈrʌm bə ɪŋ, ˈrʊm-, ˈrum-/.
  1. to dance the rumba.
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Origin of rumba

Borrowed into English from American Spanish around 1920–25
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for rumba

Historical Examples

  • Henry's teeth already were chattering like the gourds in a rumba band.

    Henry Horn's X-Ray Eye Glasses

    Dwight V. Swain


British Dictionary definitions for rumba

rumba

rhumba

noun
  1. a rhythmic and syncopated Cuban dance in duple time
  2. a ballroom dance derived from this
  3. a piece of music composed for or in the rhythm of this dance
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Word Origin

C20: from Spanish: lavish display, of uncertain origin
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 rumba

n.

1919, from Cuban Spanish rumba, originally "spree, carousal," derived from Spanish rumbo "spree, party," earlier "ostentation, pomp, leadership," perhaps originally "the course of a ship," from rombo "rhombus," in reference to the compass, which is marked with a rhombus. The verb is recorded from 1932. Related: Rumbaed; rumbaing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper