chord·​al | \ ˈkȯr-dᵊl How to pronounce chordal (audio) \

Definition of chordal

1 : of, relating to, or suggesting a chord
2 : relating to music characterized more by harmony than by counterpoint

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Examples of chordal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web It can be strummed, plucked, played for chordal accompaniment or virtuosic runs. John Adamian,, "Stanley Jordan paying tribute to Jimi at Infinity Hall," 4 Oct. 2019 Leven effortlessly pivoted back and forth between cozying up to Stepner’s line and joining the lower strings’ strong chordal figures, adding a soloistic glimmer on occasion. Globe Staff,, "Aston Magna festival explores the roots of the string quartet," 1 July 2019 Image Most avant-garde horn players then were letting go of the piano and all other chordal instruments, not to mention the structures of song form. New York Times, "Jazz Giants Dave Burrell and Archie Shepp Retrace Their Five-Decade History," 25 May 2018 Catharsis’s lineup includes agile, sweet-toned Chilean singer Camila Meza, who also plays guitar in the band, laying down chordal support rather than extended improvisation. Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, "Trombonist Ryan Keberle puts up political resistance on Find the Common, Shine a Light," 20 Apr. 2018 In the work’s middle section, the saxophonist allowed his sound to blossom into a brighter, more open timbre until everything scaled back down to a whisper, and pianist Perdomo returned to that first chordal figure. Howard Reich,, "David Sanchez plays a profound performance," 15 Dec. 2017 As always, guitarist Allemana backed his colleague/mentor with warm chordal support and answered him with flurries of notes. Howard Reich,, "Chicago celebrates George Freeman's 90th at Jazz Fest," 1 Sep. 2017 One is like an étude, with dazzling runs in double thirds for the pianist’s right hand; in another, the left hand holds things steady with a chordal pattern while the right hand unfolds in carefree filigree. Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, "Listening to the Piece That Made Chopin’s Career," 30 June 2017 The intensely chordal nature of Roberts' solo evoked shades of Dave Brubeck, and drummer Gratteau's extended cadenza conveyed a narrative quality that justly drew a warm ovation. Howard Reich,, "Judy Roberts swings back home to Chicago for Jazz Showcase residency," 9 June 2017

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

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First Known Use of chordal

1848, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for chordal

Time Traveler

The first known use of chordal was in 1848

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Cite this Entry

“Chordal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for chordal


chord·​al | \ ˈkȯrd-ᵊl How to pronounce chordal (audio) \

Medical Definition of chordal

: of or relating to an anatomical cord (as the notochord or spinal cord) used chiefly in combination perichordal

Other Words from chordal

chordally \ -​ē How to pronounce chordally (audio) \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on chordal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for chordal

Britannica English: Translation of chordal for Arabic Speakers

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