1

counterpoint

play
noun coun·ter·point \ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌpȯint\

Definition of counterpoint

  1. 1a :  one or more independent melodies added above or below a given melodyb :  the combination of two or more independent melodies into a single harmonic texture in which each retains its linear character :  polyphony

  2. 2a :  a complementing or contrasting item :  oppositeb :  use of contrast or interplay of elements in a work of art (such as a drama)

Examples of counterpoint in a Sentence

  1. The guitar and bass are played in counterpoint.

  2. The dressing is a refreshing counterpoint to the spicy chicken.

  3. The painting is a pleasant counterpoint to his earlier works.

  4. The music works in counterpoint to the images on the screen.

Recent Examples of counterpoint from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of counterpoint

Middle English, from Middle French contrepoint, from Medieval Latin contrapunctus, from Latin contra- counter- + Medieval Latin punctus musical note, melody, from Latin, act of pricking, from pungere to prick — more at pungent


2

counterpoint

verb coun·ter·point

Definition of counterpoint

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to compose or arrange in counterpoint

  3. 2 :  to set off or emphasize by juxtaposition :  set in contrast counterpoints the public and the private man — Tom Bishop

Examples of counterpoint in a Sentence

  1. The violence of the movie is counterpointed by ironic humor.

First Known Use of counterpoint

1875


COUNTERPOINT Defined for English Language Learners

counterpoint

play
noun

Definition of counterpoint for English Language Learners

  • music : a combination of two or more melodies that are played together

  • : a melody played in combination with another

  • : something that is different from something else in usually a pleasing way

counterpoint

verb

Definition of counterpoint for English Language Learners

  • : to put two things together in a way that shows how different they are from each other



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