Ball (dance)

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Julius LeBlanc Stewart - The Ball.jpg
A ball at the Russian imperial court in the 1910s.
Aristocrats gathering around Emperor Franz Joseph at a ball in the Hofburg Imperial Palace, painting by Wilhelm Gause (1900).

A ball is a formal dance.

Attenders wear evening attire, which is specified on the invitation as black tie or white tie (the most formal)[citation needed]. Social dance forms a large part of the evening; actual ballroom dancing may or may not occur.

Etymology[edit]

The word "ball" derives from the Latin word ballare, meaning "to dance"; the Latin word also developed into bailar, the Spanish and Portuguese verbs for "to dance". Catalan uses the same word, ball, for the dance event.

Types of ball[edit]

Example of a country ball in Georgian England[edit]

A well-documented ball occurred at Kingston Lacy, Dorset, England, on 19 December 1791. The occasion was to celebrate the completion of major alterations to the house and the event was organised by Frances Bankes, wife of Henry Bankes, owner of the house. The event involved 140 guests, with dancing from 9pm to 7am, interrupted by dinner at 1am.[1]

See also[edit]

An American dance card from 1884

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]