melisma

noun me·lis·ma \ mi-ˈliz-mə \
Updated on: 28 Nov 2017

Definition of melisma

plural melismata play \-mə-tə\
1 : a group of notes or tones sung on one syllable in plainsong
2 : melodic embellishment
3 : cadenza

melismatic

play \ˌme-ləz-ˈma-tik\ adjective

Recent Examples of melisma from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of melisma

New Latin, from Greek, song, melody, from melizein to sing, from melos song


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