If you make a motion with your hands to indicate eating ice cream, you are using pantomime. Parents often use this wordless communication to try to keep things from the kids. Unfortunately, the kids usually catch on quickly — especially if there is ice cream involved.

An entire show, done without words is often called a pantomime, but around December, you may read about a Christmas pantomime. This is a traditional holiday show in the United Kingdom. The play is usually based on a fairy tale, and it is put on especially for children. Although it is called a pantomime or panto, the show actually includes talking, jokes, and music. The tradition goes back to the 1700s and is still popular today.

Definitions of pantomime

n a performance using gestures and body movements without words

dumb show, mime
an abbreviation of pantomime
Type of:
acting, performing, playacting, playing
the performance of a part or role in a drama

v act out without words but with gestures and bodily movements only

Type of:
act, play, playact, roleplay
perform on a stage or theater

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