sym·​pho·​ny | \ ˈsim(p)-fə-nē How to pronounce symphony (audio) \
plural symphonies

Definition of symphony

1 : consonance of sounds
c(1) : a usually long and complex sonata for symphony orchestra
(2) : a musical composition (as for organ) resembling such a symphony in complexity or variety
3 : consonance or harmony of color (as in a painting)
b : a symphony orchestra concert
5 : something that in its harmonious complexity or variety suggests a symphonic composition a symphony of flavors

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Examples of symphony in a Sentence

the satisfying symphony of color in Renoir's canvases a performance of a Bach concerto by the San Antonio Symphony
Recent Examples on the Web Launch for free from a primitive boat ramp into miles of flat-calm waterways, views of Mount Shasta and Lassen Peak, and a symphony of calls from migratory songbirds. Tom Stienstra, San Francisco Chronicle, 8 July 2021 The best Sonoran dogs feature exceptional interplay between succulent sausage center and the symphony of creamy and spicy salsas. Andi Berlin, The Arizona Republic, 7 July 2021 The lunch-hour rally, which attracted eight core participants, a stream of curious onlookers and steady symphony of car honks, was created to show support for Britney Spears — pop star, LGBTQ icon, mental health symbol and mom. Ben Crandell,, 2 July 2021 Plus, there was an entire rack of test equipment in the expansive cargo area that made its own symphony of humming electronic sounds. Nelson Ireson, Car and Driver, 1 June 2021 His phone rings, cutting through a symphony of office small talk, phones ringing elsewhere and the sound of a printer, which sits to his right, shooting out hot sheets of paper every 30 seconds. Andre Toran, The Courier-Journal, 26 Apr. 2021 There had been no moans or panting, no bras falling on the filthy tiles (thank God!), and no automatic toilets flushing a symphony of germs into the air. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, 29 Mar. 2021 But where sounds of folk, blues, and Americana once filled these low-rise streets around the Colorado River, there’s now the symphony of construction site jackhammers and excavators echoing off steel and glass skyscrapers. Henry Gass, The Christian Science Monitor, 11 Mar. 2021 The moniker rang true the next morning when a symphony of birdsong from endemic species such as apapane and amakihi wakened me to a pastel sunrise. Jen Murphy, Travel + Leisure, 27 Feb. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for symphony

Middle English symphonie, from Middle French, from Latin symphonia, from Greek symphōnia, from symphōnos concordant in sound, from syn- + phōnē voice, sound — more at ban entry 1

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Learn More About symphony

Time Traveler for symphony

Time Traveler

The first known use of symphony was in the 15th century

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Statistics for symphony

Last Updated

14 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Symphony.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for symphony



English Language Learners Definition of symphony

: a long piece of music that is usually in four large, separate sections and that is performed by an orchestra


sym·​pho·​ny | \ ˈsim-fə-nē How to pronounce symphony (audio) \
plural symphonies

Kids Definition of symphony

1 : a usually long musical composition for a full orchestra
2 : a large orchestra of wind, string, and percussion instruments
3 : harmonious arrangement (as of sound or color)

More from Merriam-Webster on symphony

Nglish: Translation of symphony for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about symphony


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