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Eighteenth-century chamber music genre consisting of several movements, often of a light and entertaining nature, for strings, winds, or both. Though the name was applied (c. 1750–1800) to a confusingly varied range of works, it almost always referred to pieces with a single instrument to a part; this could include string quartets and even keyboard sonatas.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on divertimento, visit Britannica.com.