V

Vade mecum --Any dictionary, encyclopedia, or other book of like nature that is of pocket size. The term derives from the Latin vadere, to go, and mecum, with me.

Vadi --In the music of India, the principal note of a melody, used throughout with frequent repetition. The sonant note, which subordinates all others. See samavadi.

Vagabond --An impecunious roamer of the Middle Ages; an itinerant actor, musician or poet living from hand to mouth, making a show of living his life and disdaining his poverty. Compare with troubadour and gleeman (qq.v); see also rybalt and minstrel.

Vaisyas --The artisans and craftsmen comprising one of the four great Hindu castes, being third in the order of recognized importance according to the division made more than 4,000 years ago by the Aryan invaders who subdued India. First are the Brahmans (priests and scholars), next the Kshatriyas (rulers and warriors), followed by the Vaisyas, and finally the Sudras (unskilled laborers). Below all four and not even considered a rung on the ladder are the Untouchables, performers of the offensive varieties of work. Activities in furtherance of the abolition of castes are making considerable progress.

Vajra --The so-called thunderbolt, usually a short, double-trident form used in Hindu and Buddhist ceremonies, and frequently represented in the art of India as one of the attributes (q.v.) of a deity. Used chiefly in the rituals of the Shingon sect, it is made of bronze and approximates six inches in length. Known also as the vajra scepter.

Valaska --A ritual fighting dance of Czechoslovakia in which the weapon employed is the valaska, an ancient long-handled axe, the wood and metal parts of which are carved, hammered and painted. It may be either a male solo, or a mock duel between two men. There are several varieties, in one of which a couple executes the dance, the man tossing the valaska into the air while his partner performs hopping and jumping steps, both accompanying the movements by singing a love song; this type, in which the man shows his physical prowess, is known as the valaska courtship. It is not classified as a sword dance or morris dance (qq.v.).

Valenciennes lace --In fabrics, a rich lace made by the bobbin method; each piece is made completely, ground and pattern, by the same person and with the same thread, the design being worked in the net. Made chiefly in France and Belgium.

Valga --A musical instrument of western Africa better known as wambee (q.v.).

Valiha --A primitive plucked-string musical instrumentof Egypt, better known as marouvane (q.v.).

Vallary crown --A crown of ancient Rome, awarded to warriors in recognition of acts of conspicuous heroism. It was a circular band of gold, ornamented with attached palisades. See crown and iron crown.

Vallåter --In the music of Sweden, the term applied to any one of the primitive songs used through the centuries by the shepherds. The tone scheme varies in

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Dictionary of the Arts
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Introduction v
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • A 1
  • B 62
  • C 119
  • D 203
  • E 236
  • F 260
  • G 290
  • H 318
  • I 343
  • J 359
  • K 368
  • L 385
  • M 411
  • N 455
  • O 471
  • P 490
  • Q 562
  • R 567
  • S 605
  • T 692
  • U 744
  • V 751
  • W 767
  • X 782
  • Y 785
  • Z 792
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