bas·​so | \ ˈba-(ˌ)sō How to pronounce basso (audio) , ˈbä- How to pronounce basso (audio) \
plural bassos or bassi\ ˈbä-​ˌsē How to pronounce bassi (audio) \

Definition of basso

1 : a bass singer especially : an operatic bass
2 : a low deep voice

Examples of basso in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

His mother was a secretary, and his father was a basso profondo at the Metropolitan Opera who wanted Martin to become an artist. Harrison Smith, Washington Post, "Martin Charnin, director and lyricist who brought ‘Annie’ to Broadway, dies at 84," 7 July 2019 His booming voice and basso laugh engaged everyone in range. Isabel Debre, The Seattle Times, "Ex-NBA star Dikembe Mutombo moved to tears in Jerusalem," 27 Nov. 2018 That is, his voice was lighter and more agile than a basso profondo. Daniel J. Wakin, New York Times, "Bonaldo Giaiotti, Stalwart Operatic Bass, Dies at 85," 19 June 2018 Floral top note, high-altitude, but at the same time there’s the basso-continuo note of the forest floor. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "A Vintner’s Quest to Create a Truly American Wine," 14 May 2018 But the audience ached (speaking for myself anyway) for Freedia to take up the mic and join the chorus, sending that fantastic basso profuno voice to the heavens. Doug Maccash,, "Big Freedia conducts a church choir at Jazz Fest 2018," 28 Apr. 2018 Alessandro Corbelli brought seasoned basso-buffo authority to the manipulative Alfonso. John Von Rhein,, "Lyric revival of Mozart's romantic comedy 'Cosi Fan Tutte' touches the heart," 18 Feb. 2018 While Jackson is known for his sonorous basso speaking voice, the Capital One spot was his first opportunity to truly showcase his vocals. Paula Parisi, Billboard, "Samuel L. Jackson Shows He Can Sing Like a 'Motherf---er' in New Capital One Ad," 19 Aug. 2017 Relyea was like an Old Testament prophet in the saturnine power of his recitatives, lightening his deep dark basso timbre for the evocation of Adam and Eve’s connubial bliss in his duets with Sierra in Part 3. John Von Rhein,, "A memorable 'Creation' from James Levine at Ravinia," 9 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'basso.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of basso

circa 1724, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for basso

Italian, from Medieval Latin bassus, from bassus short, low

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about basso

Statistics for basso

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for basso

The first known use of basso was circa 1724

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on basso

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with basso

Comments on basso

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


to complain fretfully

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!