- Enter a word for the dictionary definition.
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Vaudeville \Vaude"ville\, n. [F., fr. Vau-de-vire, a village in Normandy, where Olivier Basselin, at the end of the 14th century, composed such songs.] [Written also vaudevil.] [1913 Webster] 1. A kind of song of a lively character, frequently embodying a satire on some person or event, sung to a familiar air in couplets with a refrain; a street song; a topical song. [1913 Webster] 2. A theatrical piece, usually a comedy, the dialogue of which is intermingled with light or satirical songs, set to familiar airs. [1913 Webster] The early vaudeville, which is the forerunner of the opera bouffe, was light, graceful, and piquant. --Johnson's Cyc. [1913 Webster] 3. a variety show when performed live in a theater (see above); as, to play in vaudeville; a vaudeville actor. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]