from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A lively, whirling southern Italian dance once thought to be a remedy for tarantism.
- n. The music for this dance, in 6/8 time.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A rapid dance in 6/8 time, originating in Italy, or a piece of music for such a dance.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A rapid and delirious sort of Neapolitan dance in 6-8 time, which moves in whirling triplets; -- so called from a popular notion of its being a remedy against the poisonous bite of the tarantula. Some derive its name from Taranto in Apulia.
- n. Music suited to such a dance.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A rapid, whirling dance for one couple, originating in southern Italy and specially common in the sixteenth century, when it was popularly supposed to be a remedy for tarantism.
- n. Music for such a dance, or in its rhythm, which in early examples was quadruple, but is now sextuple and very quick. It is usually characterized by sharp transitions from major to minor.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. music composed in six-eight time for dancing the tarantella
- n. a lively whirling Italian dance for two persons
Italian, after Taranto .(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Italian tarantella, a diminutive of Taranto, a town in southern Italy (but popularly associated with tarantola ‘tarantula’, on the belief that the dance was variously a result of, or cure for, its bite). (Wiktionary)