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libretto

[li-bret-oh] /lɪˈbrɛt oʊ/
noun, plural librettos, libretti
[li-bret-ee] /lɪˈbrɛt i/ (Show IPA)
1.
the text or words of an opera or similar extended musical composition.
2.
a book or booklet containing such a text.
Origin of libretto
1735-1745
1735-45; < Italian, diminutive of libro book < Latin liber; see -et
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for libretto
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The music is lost, but the libretto survives, and that is enough to account for the collapse.

    Handel Edward J. Dent
  • He also seized the opportunity of offering him a libretto for a new oratorio.

    Handel Edward J. Dent
  • The summer was devoted to the composition of Belshazzar, for which Jennens had supplied the libretto.

    Handel Edward J. Dent
  • In writing the libretto I had become acquainted with the actresses.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • I do not claim that our libretto was good poetry but it served as a vehicle for the tunes.

    My Reminiscences Rabindranath Tagore
  • He did not notice that the binding which held the libretto was tricolored.

  • And he has written a grand opera on a mediæval theme to his own libretto.

British Dictionary definitions for libretto

libretto

/lɪˈbrɛtəʊ/
noun (pl) -tos, -ti (-tiː)
1.
a text written for and set to music in an opera, etc
Word Origin
C18: from Italian, diminutive of libro book
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
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Word Origin and History for libretto
n.

(plural libretti), 1742, from Italian libretto, diminutive of libro "book," from Latin liber (genitive libri), see library. Related: Librettist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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