Definition of symphonism
1 : musical composition in a symphonic style; especially : musical composition of complexity and seriousness of purpose regarded as appropriate to the symphony … their suspicion of the abstract symphonic genre was deeply rooted enough to provoke calls for a new kind of proletarian symphonism based on mass song. — Pauline Fairclough, A Soviet Credo, 2006
2 the writing of symphonies So Debussy and Satie began to seek a way out of the hulking fortresses of Beethovenian symphonism and Wagnerian opera. — Alex Ross, The Rest Is Noise, 2007
Love words? You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.
Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:
- More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
- Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
- Advanced search features
- Ad free!
Origin and Etymology of symphonism
symphony + -ism, after Russian simfonizm ◆The word simfonizm as a musicological term in this sense was introduced by the Russian composer and critic Boris Vladimirovič Asaf’ev (1884-1949; pseudonym, “Igor’ Glebov”) in an article “Puti v buduščee” (“Paths to the future”), Melos, vypusk 2, St. Petersburg, 1918.
First Known Use: 1916See Words from the same year
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up symphonism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).