cancan


cancan

noun

  1. a lively high kicking dance that came into vogue about 1830 in Paris and after 1844 was used as an exhibition dance.

noun

  1. a high-kicking dance performed by a female chorus, originating in the music halls of 19th-century Paris
n.

also can-can, 1848, from French, possibly from can, a French children’s word for “duck” (cf. canard), via some notion of “waddling” too obscure or obscene to attempt to disentangle here. Or perhaps from French cancan (16c.) “noise, disturbance,” echoic of quacking.

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