sun dance



a religious ceremony associated with the sun, practiced by North American Indians of the Plains, consisting of dancing attended with various symbolic rites and commonly including self-torture.

Origin of sun dance

An Americanism dating back to 1840–50 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sun dance

Historical Examples of sun dance

  • He had no thought of his presence at the Sun-dance having been detected.

  • The Potlatch was sentiment, and the Sun-dance was an actual poem.

  • The dancers have made the complete circuit, and about one hundred young men, little more than boys, join in the great Sun-dance.

  • Then the Modoc Indians got up a sun-dance, and they had to march over to Kedahmina and stop it.

    Boys of The Fort

    Ralph Bonehill

  • "Sun-dance," said the Inspector, as near to excitement as he generally allowed himself.

    Corporal Cameron

    Ralph Connor

British Dictionary definitions for sun dance

sun dance


a North American Indian ceremony associated with the sun, performed at the summer solstice
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