dance of death


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dance of death:

see Death, Dance ofDeath, Dance of,
or danse macabre
, originally a 14th-century morality poem. The poem was a dialogue between Death and representatives of all classes from the Pope down. By the 15th cent., pictorial representation with verses illustrating the pictures became common.
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Death, Dance of,

or

danse macabre

(däns məkä`brə, –bər, dăns), originally a 14th-century morality poem. The poem was a dialogue between Death and representatives of all classes from the Pope down. By the 15th cent., pictorial representation with verses illustrating the pictures became common. The dance, in which Death as a skeleton or a corpse led his victims, was painted on walls of churchyards and cemeteries. The earliest known fully articulated example of the Dance of Death was a series of mural paintings (1424–25) in the cloisters of the Church of the Holy Innocents, Paris. The paintings were destroyed in 1669. In 1485, Guyot Marchand published a set of 17 woodcuts, with verses appended, based on the Paris murals; the set went through many editions and established its own genre. The best-known representations of the Dance of Death are the drawings of Holbein, the younger. Goethe wrote a ballad on the theme, Der Todtentanz, and in music Saint-Saëns used it in Danse macabre.

Bibliography

See facsimile of G. Marchand's Dance of Death (1945); H. Holbein, Dance of Death (1538, new ed. 1972); study by L. P. Kurtz (1934).

Dance of Death

Holbein woodcut, one of many medieval examples of the death motif. [Eur. Culture: Bishop, 363-367]
See: Death
References in periodicals archive ?
Talbot Donaldson (London: Athlone Press, 1975), 665; see also Clark, The Dance of Death, 16, and Tristram, Figures of Life and Death, 179.
Today, perhaps the most celebrated legacy of Dance of Death is that it was the forerunner of 20th-century American drama's nastiest play about a marriage, Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginio Woolf?
It will be our civilian population; and once again we'll change our partners for the next round in the Dance of Death.
Recently, he said of the Milltown massacre: "It was literally a dance of death.
Far more substantial was Hans van Manen's Kleines Requiem, set to Henryk Gorecki's fascinating Kleines Requiem for a Polka, a solemn piece that has a macabre, polka-like dance of death in its middle.
He gave Giselle's mother a longer pantomime, which tells of the Wilis and their dance of death, and when the same music is heard again in Act II when she comes to lay a wreath at her daughter's grave, she repeats it to the gravediggers and Hilarion.
A five-day trial at the High Court in Glasgow heard cameras caught Stillie, then 15, and his mates performing a dance of death round their prey.
Too much drink, consumed too fast, a snarl-up of traffic that deters taxis from sitting next to a big event, a long trek across a narrow pedestrian bridge, dangerous playacting as the fumes of heavy duty alcohol evaporate all sense of responsibility and deaden the pleas of loved ones, not one single lifebelt available - all of these and more conspired in a macabre dance of death.
If live music is your bag then don't forget that the forerunners of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal hit Tyneside on Wednesday when Iron Maiden bring their delightful Dance of Death world tour to the Telewest Arena.
The final moments were a moving, almost medieval dance of death as she led him allegorically across the roofs of the city.
Mum Janet 51, said: "Helen would like to say that it is only when problems like this hit home that you realise Ecstasy isn't worth a dance of death.