A light leap by a horse, in which both hind legs leave the ground just before the forelegs are set down.
v. cur·vet·ted, cur·vet·ting, cur·vets or cur·vet·ed or cur·vet·ing
1. To leap in a curvet.
2. To prance; frolic.
To cause to leap in a curvet.
[Italian corvetta, from Old Italian, from Old French courbette, from courber, to curve, from Latin curvāre, from curvus, curved; see sker-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.