noun \ˈnäk-ˌtərn\

: a piece of music especially for the piano that has a soft and somewhat sad melody

Full Definition of NOCTURNE

:  a work of art dealing with evening or night; especially :  a dreamy pensive composition for the piano — compare aubade 3

Origin of NOCTURNE

French, adjective, nocturnal, from Latin nocturnus
First Known Use: 1814


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Nineteenth-century character piece for piano. The name was first used c. 1812 by the Scottish composer John Field (1782–1837) for works employing a lyrical melody over an accompaniment of broken chords. Frédéric Chopin's romantic nocturnes, similar in style, are the most celebrated.


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