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A traditional Japanese dramatic art form featuring large puppets operated by onstage puppeteers, typically cloaked in black clothing, with a narrative that is recited by a chanter. The puppets have heads, hands, and feet of wood attached to a bodiless cloth costume.
[Japanese : after the Bunraku-za, a puppet theater established in Osaka in 1805 by Bunrakuken Uemura (1751-1810), Japanese puppeteer.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Theatre) a Japanese form of puppet theatre in which the puppets are usually about four feet high, with moving features as well as limbs and each puppet is manipulated by up to three puppeteers who remain onstage
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
n. (sometimes cap.)
a form of Japanese puppet theater in which puppeteers who are visible to the audience manipulate large puppets to the accompaniment of a chanted narration.
[1915–20; < Japanese, from the Bunraku(-za), an Osaka theater]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.