Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index


Chorea (choreia, khoreia, χορεία) is a round dance (χορεύω σε κύκλο) accompanied by singing (see chorus, khoros), known in ancient Greek. A discription of chorea may be found in Homer's "Iliad".

This dance form is also known by other ethnoses, under names often derived from the Greek one, e.g., Khorovod in Russia, Hora in Romania, Moldova, and Israel, Horo in Bulgaria.

Chorea are uncontrolled, purposeless, rapid and jerky movements of face and body. Frequently observed movements are facial grimacing, raising the shoulders and flexing and extending the fingers.

Major causes are Sydenham's chorea, Huntingtons Chorea, metabolic insults (elevated liver enzymes, elevated or lowered blood glucose levels) and stroke.

The name is derived from New Latin "chorea Sancti Viti", or St.Vitus's dance.