quin·​tet | \ kwin-ˈtet How to pronounce quintet (audio) \

Definition of quintet

1 : a musical composition or movement for five instruments or voices
2 : a group or set of five: such as
a : the performers of a quintet
b : a basketball team

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Did You Know?

A classical quintet is usually written for strings (usually two violins, two violas, and a cello) or woodwinds (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, and horn), but brass quintets (two trumpets, horn, trombone, and tuba) have also become popular in North America recently. In jazz, Miles Davis led two famous quintets. In pop music, the Miracles, the Temptations, and the Jackson 5 were immensely popular vocal quintets. In rock, one of the most common instrumental lineups has been a quintet consisting of two guitars, a bass, a keyboard, and drums; famous rock quintets have included the Grateful Dead and the Beach Boys.

Examples of quintet in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Among that quintet, Vanderbilt’s Tim Corbin leads the list, having been credited with just over $1.3 million in total compensation for the 2017 calendar, according to the university’s most recent federal tax return. Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY, "Top college baseball coaches make major-league money; at least nine at $1 million or more," 15 June 2019 Roger Bacon outhit Coldwater 8-6 but committed a quintet of miscues in the field leading to the two disastrous innings that gave the Cavaliers the game. Scott Springer, Cincinnati.com, "Roger Bacon baseball's fielding woes lead to loss to Coldwater in Ohio state semifinal," 8 June 2019 Jordan Dreyer, the vocalist of the post-hardcore quintet, harpoons the air with his entire body, while singing with a controlled anguish. Greta Moran, Teen Vogue, "The Culture of Sexual Harassment at Music Festivals Like Coachella Could Be Changing," 3 May 2019 The Pride issue of Billboard also includes profiles on soul singer Shea Diamond, pop sensation Kim Petras and Syd of the R&B quintet the Internet. Patrick Crowley, Billboard, "Dua Lipa Praises 'Absolute Superstar' Troye Sivan for Covering Billboard's Pride Issue," 17 June 2018 Her tee, by Rhude, features the '90s pop quintet—with baby faces, frosted tips, and all—covered in Swarovski crystal accents. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Don't Let Kylie Jenner's Leather Corset Skirt Distract You from Her Incredible Backstreet Boys T-Shirt," 17 Dec. 2018 Malfunctions aside, the quintet constantly changed out their hair accessories along with their outfits throughout the show. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Red Velvet Members Share Their Biggest Skin-Care Secrets," 7 Mar. 2019 Recently, Amir Abdullah, a DJ and music historian, discovered the reels in the possession of Hermine Brooks, wife of the Mingus quintet’s Roy Brooks. Marc Myers, WSJ, "‘Jazz in Detroit/Strata Concert Gallery/46 Selden’ by Charles Mingus Review: The Jazz Star’s Rocky Year," 5 Nov. 2018 Mark Holgate, Vogue Fashion News Director The ’90s were bookended for me with a quintet of supermodels, as Linda, Christy, Naomi, Cindy, and Tatjana were about to become known, on the January 1990 cover of British Vogue. Nicole Phelps, Vogue, "That’s So ’90s: Vogue Editors Share Their Favorite Fashion Memories From This Year’s Most Trending Decade," 22 Dec. 2018

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

1764, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for quintet

quintet from Italian quintetto, from quinto fifth, from Latin quintus; quintette from French, from Italian quintetto

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Statistics for quintet

Last Updated

21 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for quintet

The first known use of quintet was in 1764

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More Definitions for quintet



English Language Learners Definition of quintet

: a group of five singers or musicians who perform together
: a piece of music for five singers or musicians


quin·​tet | \ kwin-ˈtet How to pronounce quintet (audio) \

Kids Definition of quintet

1 : a piece of music for five instruments or voices
2 : a group of five singers or musicians who perform together
3 : a group or set of five

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More from Merriam-Webster on quintet

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with quintet

Spanish Central: Translation of quintet

Nglish: Translation of quintet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quintet for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about quintet

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