Definition of saraband in English:


(also sarabande)


  • 1A slow, stately Spanish dance in triple time.

    • ‘She appears again in another story, ‘The Comet’, where ‘In a faraway square the mad Tluja, driven to despair by the nagging of small boys, would dance her wild saraband, lifting high her skirt to the amusement of the crowd.’’
    • ‘The Boada solo, with epaulement, hand on the hip, shoulder thrust slightly forward as part of the de rigueur presentation of a sarabande, is wonderfully elegant; Boada provided a restraint quite distinct from his ebullient Basilio.’
    • ‘A sarabande is a two-person dance, popular in the 17th and 18th centuries, and Bergman structures his film around 10 two-person conversations which gradually move closer and closer to the characters - sometimes closer than we would like.’
    • ‘In France, the dance became slower and more stately, as did the sarabande on its removal to France from Spain.’
    1. 1.1 A piece of music written for the saraband.
      • ‘In reality, Variation 26 is nothing more than a sarabande with ornamental triplet 16 ths, which implies not an extremely fast tempo and loud volume, but rather a slow to moderate tempo and a more delicate and expressive performance.’
      • ‘It was the most satisfying sarabande of the concert.’
      • ‘Much of it is in dance forms, such as the sarabande, the courante, the menuet, and the gigue - another innovation in French chamber music of that era.’
      • ‘His concertos are made up of strings of juxtaposed contrasting movements (between four and six per concerto) and you sense that he could go on adding more gigues, sarabandes and gavottes without damaging the overall structure.’
      • ‘Because its tempo is that of a sarabande, it actually is much less difficult than most performers think.’


Early 17th century: from French sarabande, from Spanish and Italian zarabanda.