Ragtime is a genre of music that was very popular in the early 20th century. The bouncing, energetic rhythms of ragtime were ideal dance music.

Ragtime is credited with being the first African-American musical form; jazz, which was strongly influenced by ragtime, followed soon afterward. While distinctions between the two genres vary, ragtime is generally described as piano-based and in duple meter, with two main beats per measure. The syncopated ragtime sound became enormously popular after the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. Today, Scott Joplin is probably the most well-known ragtime composer. Ragtime comes from the American dialect word rag, "dance ball."

Definitions of ragtime
  1. noun
    music with a syncopated melody (usually for the piano)
    synonyms: rag
    see moresee less
    type of:
    dance music
    music to dance to
Word Family

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