ballerina

[bal-uh-ree-nuh]
noun
1.
a principal female dancer in a ballet company. Compare prima ballerina.
2.
any female ballet dancer.
3.
a woman's very low-heeled or heelless shoe or slipper, made to resemble a ballet slipper.
Compare ballet slipper.


Origin:
1785–95; < Italian, feminine of ballerino professional dancer, probably equivalent to baller(ia) dance (ball(are) to dance (< Late Latin; see ball2) + -eria < Old French; see -ery) + -ino -ine1

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Collins
World English Dictionary
ballerina (ˌbæləˈriːnə)
 
n
1.  a female ballet dancer
2.  (US) the principal female dancer of a ballet company
 
[C18: from Italian, feminine of ballerino dancing master, from ballare to dance, from Late Latin ballāre: see ball²]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

ballerina
1792, from It., lit. "dancing girl," fem. of ballerino "dancer," from ballo "a dance" (see ball (2)). The It. plural form ballerine formerly sometimes was used in Eng.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

ballerina definition


In ballet, a female dancer. (See prima ballerina.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
Be the belle of the ball with evening slippers or ballerina flats.
Imagine an ad that shows a toy ballerina standing alone and twirling.
However, the delayed diagnosis denied me a full recovery and cost me a career as a ballerina.
When you open the box the music plays and the ballerina starts to dance.
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