noun fer·ma·ta \fer-ˈmä-tə\

Definition of fermata

  1. :  a prolongation at the discretion of the performer of a musical note, chord, or rest beyond its given time value; also :  the sign ·̑ denoting such a prolongation —called also hold

Origin and Etymology of fermata

Italian, literally, stop, from fermare to stop, from Latin firmare to make firm

First Known Use: circa 1859

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