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overture

noun over·ture \ ˈō-vər-ˌchu̇r , ˈō-və- , -chər , -ˌtyu̇r , -ˌtu̇r \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of overture

1 a :an initiative toward agreement or action :proposal
b :something introductory :prelude
2 a :the orchestral introduction to a musical dramatic work
b :an orchestral concert piece written especially as a single movement in sonata form

Examples of overture in a Sentence

  1. The government has made a significant peace overture by opening the door to negotiation.

  2. the parade down Main Street served as the overture for a weekend of fun and festivities

Recent Examples of overture from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of overture

Middle English, literally, opening, from Anglo-French, from Vulgar Latin *opertura, alteration of Latin apertura — more at aperture

overture Synonyms

Synonyms
curtain-raiser, prelude, preamble, preliminary, prologue (also prolog), warm-up
Related Words
countdown, run-up [chiefly British]; lead-in; kickoff, start

2

overture

verb

Definition of overture

overtured; overturing
transitive verb
1 :to put forward as an overture
2 :to make or present an overture to

First Known Use of overture

1655


OVERTURE Defined for English Language Learners

overture

noun

Definition of overture for English Language Learners

  • : a piece of music played at the start of an opera, a musical play, etc.

  • : something that is offered or suggested with the hope that it will start a relationship, lead to an agreement, etc.

  • : the first part of an event : the beginning of something


OVERTURE Defined for Kids

overture

noun over·ture \ ˈō-vər-ˌchu̇r \

Definition of overture for Students

1 :something first offered or suggested with the hope of reaching an agreement
  • Old enemies made overtures of peace.
2 :a piece of music played at the beginning of an opera or musical play


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