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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
1840-50, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for sun-dance
Historical Examples
  • The Potlatch was sentiment, and the sun-dance was an actual poem.

  • 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
  • At the door they halted, and Seth spoke for the 289 first time since leaving the sun-dance.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • "sun-dance," said the Inspector, as near to excitement as he generally allowed himself.

    Corporal Cameron Ralph Connor
  • He had no thought of his presence at the sun-dance having been detected.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • The sun-dance continued for days of fasting and sacrificial work by the participants.

    Among the Sioux R. J. Creswell
  • The dancers have made the complete circuit, and about one hundred young men, little more than boys, join in the great sun-dance.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • The sun-dance lodge was a circular wooden structure of poles with rafters coming together to a point above.

    Policing the Plains R.G. MacBeth
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
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