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Quanquam or Cancan

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A slang manner of dancing quadrilles permitted in the public gardens of Paris, etc. The word cancan is a corruption of the Latin quamquam, a term applied to the exercises delivered by young theological students before the divinity professors. Hence it came to signify “babble,” “jargon,” anything crude, jejune, etc.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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