The ballata (plural: ballate) is an Italianpoetic and musical form in use from the late 13th to the 15th century. It has the musical structure AbbaA, with the first and last stanzas having the same texts. It is thus most similar to the French musical 'forme fixe' virelai (and not the ballade as the name might otherwise suggest). The first and last "A" is called a ripresa, the "b" lines are piedi (feet), while the fourth line is called a "volta". Longer ballate may be found in the form AbbaAbbaA, etc. Unlike the virelai, the two "b" lines usually have exactly the same music and only in later ballate pick up the (formerly distinctly French) first and second (open and close) endings. The term comes from the verb ballare, to dance, and the form certainly began as dance music.