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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Lavolt \La*volt"\, Lavolta \La*vol"ta\, n. [It. la volta the turn, turning, whirl. Cf. Volt of a horse, Volta.] An old dance, for two persons, being a kind of waltz, in which the woman made a high spring or bound.


n. An ancient dance of the Renaissance which incorporated many challenging twists and skips.


The volta (plural: voltas) (Italian: "the turn" or "turning") is an anglicised name for a Renaissance dance for couples from the later Renaissance. This dance was associated with the galliard and done to the same kind of music. Its main figure consisted of a turn and lift in a sort of closed position, which could be done either to the right or to the left. It is also called La volta, Volta, Volte. Spelling variants include la volta and levolto; its name is la volte in French and la volta in Italian. Considered at first to be risque and controversial, La volta became a respectable, but never completely dignified, dance after Queen Elizabeth I of England danced it with the Earl of Leicester.

Usage examples of "lavolta".

Lucy and the demons danced a vicious lavolta, where the slightest misstep could cost her life.

In an orchestra in the largest room, musicians were placed, and here brawls, galliards, lavoltas, passameasures, pavans, sauteuses, cushion-dances, and kissing-dances were performed by the company.

A student of Shakspere, I had learned something of every dance alluded to in his plays, and hence partially understood several of those I now saw--the minuet, the pavin, the hey, the coranto, the lavolta.