Multilingual Music Glossary

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We are currently providing explanations for 2441 terms from 12 languages, including English, Italian, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Finnish, Latin…

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Some random terms

  • harmony Tones sounding simultaneously.
  • chanson [French] French polyphonic song of the Middle Ages and Renaissance set to either courtly or popular poetry.
  • non troppo [Italian] Not too much.
  • squillante [Italian] Ringing.
  • quartal harmony Harmony based on the interval of the fourth as opposed to a third; used in twentieth century music.
  • sonata da camera [Italian] A baroque style of sonata, consisting in a suite of stylized dances, performed either by a small ensemble or by a soloist.
  • dramatic soprano A soprano voice type with a heavier tone color and more power throughout her range.
  • octave Interval between two tones seven diatonic pitches apart; the upper tone vibrates twice as fast as the lower one.
  • ricercare [Italian] Literally, “search”. Term used in the Renaissance originally meaning a keyboard or lute composition of an introductory nature, similar to a prelude, but later meaning a free composition more resembling a fantasia or a fugue. Both forms of the ricercare were characterized by complexity and an esoteric nature.
  • gentile [Italian] Gentle, kind.
  • accelerando [Italian] Gradually accelerating or getting faster.
  • vivacissimamente [Italian] A directive to perform in a very lively or brisk manner.
  • binary measure A measure containing two beats.
  • tie A curved line drawn over or under the heads of two notes of the same pitch indicating that they should be played as a single note.
  • son [French] Sound.