- the sounding of the notes of a chord in rapid succession instead of simultaneously.
- a chord thus sounded.
Origin of arpeggio
1735–45; < Italian: literally, a harping, noun derivative of arpeggi(are) to play on the harp (< Germanic; compare Old English hearpi(g)an to harp)
Also called broken chord.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for arpeggio
I amused myself by playing an arpeggio when Schikaneder came to a pause.Life Of Mozart, Vol. 3 (of 3)
The study ends with the arpeggio passage as at the beginning.Nicolo Paganini: His Life and Work
Stephen Samuel Stratton
There can never be too much practice of a scale or arpeggio exercise.Great Singers on the Art of Singing
James Francis Cooke
Scale and arpeggio passages were absolutely clean and without a flaw.Memories of a Musical Life
There must be scale and arpeggio study, in which the metronome can be used.Piano Mastery
- a chord whose notes are played in rapid succession rather than simultaneously
- an ascending and descending figuration used in practising the piano, voice, etc
C18: from Italian, from arpeggiare to perform on the harp, from arpa harp
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for arpeggio
1742, from Italian arpeggio, from arpeggiare "to play upon the harp," from arpa "harp," which is of Germanic origin (see harp (n.)). Related: Arpeggiated; arpeggiation.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper