bal·​lade bə-ˈläd How to pronounce ballade (audio)
: a fixed verse form consisting usually of three stanzas with recurrent rhymes, an envoi, and an identical refrain for each part
: a musical composition usually for piano suggesting the epic ballad

Examples of ballade in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Like that Chopin ballade, a good routine has light and shade, fast sections and longueurs. Helen Lewis, The Atlantic, 8 Apr. 2020 Video: Manjula Varghese For the seniors, Christopher knocked out all four Chopin ballades. Steve Rubenstein,, 9 June 2019 And not just the easy stuff, but the whirling ballades and the high-octane waltzes and scherzos that usually separate the young pianists from the veterans but — in the case of a prodigy like Christopher — don’t. Steve Rubenstein,, 9 June 2019 The four ballades are full of beautiful music, a point emphasized in Pierdomenico’s lyrical interpretations. Olin Chism,, 5 June 2017 The second of two great septuagenarian pianists passing through New York this week brings with him an all-Chopin program, featuring two sets of nocturnes, a couple of ballades, a scherzo, a berceuse and the third of the composer’s sonatas. David Allen, New York Times, 18 May 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ballade.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


(sense 1) originally spelling variant of ballad, with pronunciation later adjusted to French; (sense 2) borrowed from French, probably alluding to ballade "narrative poem suitable for singing," borrowed from English ballad

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of ballade was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near ballade

Cite this Entry

“Ballade.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2023.

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