Main definitions of beguine in English

: beguine1beguine2

beguine1

noun

  • A popular dance of West Indian origin, similar to the foxtrot.

    • ‘At night, party-goers dance the beguine, which was born in Martinique and reveals the island’s soul.’
    • ‘Spike wrote: ‘We present a very colourful act in rhumba costume and our numbers comprise sambas, beguines, rhumbas etc.’’
    • ‘She refused to begin the beguine when they besought her to’
    • ‘Like many Latin dances, the beguine emphasizes the ability to roll the hips while stepping, evoking sensuality.’

Origin

1930s: from West Indian French, from French béguin infatuation.

Pronunciation:

beguine

/bəˈɡēn/

Main definitions of beguine in English

: beguine1beguine2

beguine2

noun

  • (in the Roman Catholic Church) a member of a lay sisterhood in the Low Countries, not bound by vows.

    • ‘In a fascinating appendix he profiles some Beguine women who had associations with the Spirituals, and throughout the text he warns against a tendency to see every upholder of evangelical poverty as either a heretic or even a Spiritual.’
    • ‘Mechthild of Magdeburg was a member of a Beguine community.’

Origin

Late 15th century: Old French béguine, medieval Latin beguīna, from the name of Lambert Bègue or le Bègue (‘the Stammerer’), a 12th-century priest who founded the order.

Pronunciation:

beguine

/bəˈɡēn/