Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

cantilena

play
noun can·ti·le·na \ˌkan-tə-ˈlā-nə, -ˈlē-\

Definition of cantilena

  1. :  a vocal or instrumental passage of sustained lyricism



Origin of cantilena

Italian, from Latin, song, from cantus


First Known Use: circa 1740


Learn More about cantilena


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up cantilena? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a smart aleck

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

prompt maudlin angry oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ