melody

noun
mel·​o·​dy | \ ˈme-lə-dē How to pronounce melody (audio) \
plural melodies

Definition of melody

1 : a sweet or agreeable succession or arrangement of sounds whilst all the winds with melody are ringing— P. B. Shelley
2 : a rhythmic succession of single tones organized as an aesthetic whole a hummable melody the piper's fingers play the melody on a pipe called a chanter— Pat Cahill

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Other Words from melody

melodic \ mə-​ˈlä-​dik How to pronounce melodic (audio) \ adjective
melodically \ mə-​ˈlä-​di-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce melodically (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for melody

Synonyms

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Examples of melody in a Sentence

He wrote a piece that includes some beautiful melodies. a composer known for his love of melody He sang a few old-fashioned melodies.
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Recent Examples on the Web He and his five brothers grew up hearing their father sing cantorial and congregational melodies to thousands of people in the synagogue on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Sergio Carmona, sun-sentinel.com, "Levis JCC’s concert series to feature klezmer orchestra," 6 Sep. 2019 And veils, like fog, are to visual texture as notes are to a melody. Mark Feeney, BostonGlobe.com, "Photography’s biggest stars are out in MFA’s ‘Viewpoints’ show," 15 Aug. 2019 Patty, the principal at a local kindergarten, was the lyricist, while Mildred wrote the melodies. Sarah Todd, Quartzy, "The necessary vulnerability of celebrating your birthday as an adult," 30 Aug. 2019 But these departures from the traditional melody don’t dismantle the anthem. Mark Clague, The Conversation, "Fifty years ago, Jimi Hendrix’s Woodstock anthem expressed the hopes and fears of a nation," 14 Aug. 2019 At other times, the light-hearted release of Paris’ off-white streets are complemented by composer Alexandre Desplat’s melodies. Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter, "'An Officer and a Spy': Film Review | Venice 2019," 30 Aug. 2019 The songs, which both clock in at just over two minutes, incorporate minimal production, instead featuring gentle guitar melodies that showcase Hawke’s voice. Rachel Desantis, PEOPLE.com, "Ethan Hawke Proudly Cheers on Daughter Maya as She Releases Two 'Gorgeous' Debut Singles," 18 Aug. 2019 Sly and the Family Stone has managed to combine a happy-sounding melody line with an infectious and very danceable soul beat. New York Times, "Woodstock 1969: A Story Vastly Bigger Than Editors Realized," 9 Aug. 2019 This seven-member group will deliver a high-energy performance with their groovy horn, percussion and bass melodies. Author: Lauren Ellenbecker, Anchorage Daily News, "Salmonfest time: Headliners Jason Mraz, Ani DiFranco and Wookiefoot kick off annual music festival in Ninilchik," 1 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'melody.' 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 melody

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for melody

Middle English melodie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin melodia, from Greek melōidia chanting, music, from melos limb, musical phrase, song (probably akin to Breton mell joint) + aeidein to sing — more at ode

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Statistics for melody

Last Updated

4 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for melody

The first known use of melody was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for melody

melody

noun
How to pronounce melody (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of melody

: a pleasing series of musical notes that form the main part of a song or piece of music
: a song or tune

melody

noun
mel·​o·​dy | \ ˈme-lə-dē How to pronounce melody (audio) \
plural melodies

Kids Definition of melody

1 : pleasing arrangement of sounds
2 : a series of musical notes or tones arranged in a definite pattern of pitch and rhythm
3 : the main part in a musical composition

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Comments on melody

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not being in agreement or harmony

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