In music, primary pitches of a key or mode arranged within an octave. Scales are distinguished by the pattern of the intervals between adjacent notes. A scale can be seen as an abstraction from melodythat is, the pitches of a melody arranged in stepwise order.
Examples of the chromatic, major, and minor scales.—© Merriam-Webster Inc.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on scale, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up scale? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.