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[mod-uh-rah-toh] /ˌmɒd əˈrɑ toʊ/
adjective, Music.
moderate; in moderate time.
Origin of moderato
1715-25; < Italian < Latin moderātus moderate Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for moderato
Historical Examples
  • Allegro moderato, which is built substantially on the chief theme (solo 'cello).

    Franz Liszt James Huneker
  • It ends in a brilliant cadenza, that leads to the theme in moderato time.

    Camilla: A Tale of a Violin Charles Barnard
  • In the first long movement (an Allegro moderato) there is no repeat.

    The Pianoforte Sonata J.S. Shedlock
  • Opposite in feeling is the descending motive of strings, moderato con anima (9/8).

  • A long cadenza leads to the last movement in moderato time and in the key of E.

    Camilla: A Tale of a Violin Charles Barnard
  • Most of the time the moderato was interpreted as an allegro, and the andante maestro as a simple moderato.

    Musical Memories Camille Saint-Sans
  • The word "moderato" was written in by the Composer's direction, without any request from the editor.

    The Shadow World

    Hamlin Garland
  • Dahn interprets 'moderato ordine,' 'not so absolutely as the Roman clergy desires.'

    The Letters of Cassiodorus Cassiodorus (AKA Magnus Aurelius Cassiodorus Senator)
British Dictionary definitions for moderato


adverb (music)
at a moderate tempo
(preceded by a tempo marking) a direction indicating that the tempo specified is to be used with restraint: allegro moderato
Word Origin
C18: from Italian, from Latin moderātus; see moderate
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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