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See also: Melody


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From Middle English melodie, melodye, from Old French melodie, from Latin melodia, from Ancient Greek μελῳδίᾱ (melōidíā, singing, chanting), from μέλος (mélos, musical phrase) + ἀοιδή (aoidḗ, song), contracted form ᾠδή (ōidḗ).



melody (plural melodies)

  1. A sequence of notes that makes up a musical phrase
    • 1905, [Edward Plunkett,] Lord Dunsany, The Gods of Pegāna[1], London: Elkin Mathews, [], →OCLC, page 15:
      There is a melody upon the Earth as though ten thousand streams all sang together for their homes that they had forsaken in the hills.
    • 1954, Alexander Alderson, chapter 1, in The Subtle Minotaur[2]:
      Slowly she turned round and faced towards a neat white bungalow, set some way back from the path behind a low hedge of golden privet. No light showed, but someone there was playing the piano. The strange elusiveness of the soft, insistent melody seemed to draw her forward.


  • (sequence of notes that makes up a musical phrase): tune

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