ritornello

noun ri·tor·nel·lo \ ˌri-tər-ˈne-(ˌ)lō , ˌri-ˌtȯr- \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of ritornello

plural ritornelli play \ˌri-tər-ˈne-(ˌ)lē, ˌri-ˌtȯr-\ or ritornellos
1 a :a short recurrent instrumental passage in a vocal composition
b :an instrumental interlude in early opera
2 :a tutti passage in a concerto or rondo refrain

Recent Examples of ritornello from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of ritornello

Italian, diminutive of ritorno return, from ritornare to return, from ri- re- + tornare to turn, from Latin, to turn on a lathe — more at 1turn


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