Definition of habanera in US English:



  • A Cuban dance in slow duple time.

    • ‘Traditional European dances were mixed with the habanera, a popular dance from Cuba, to form a new style, the milonga.’
    • ‘The influences that gave rise to the tango in the streets of Buenos Aires range from the Cuban habanera to Sicilian folk song and dance.’
    • ‘She's fashioned an album of salsa, calypso, habanera, mambo, meringue and other Caribbean rhythms.’
    • ‘Performers will need a strong rhythmic understanding to be secure playing with others while using the beat and style of ragtime, bossa nova, waltz, habanera, rock funk.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, we can hear snatches of dances: bluegrass fiddle, ‘slow dancing’ from the Fifties, jazz riff, habanera or Latin rock, and so on.’


Late 19th century: Spanish, short for danza habanera ‘dance of Havana’.