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string quartet

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noun
  1. a musical composition, usually in three or four movements, for four stringed instruments, typically two violins, viola, and cello.
  2. a first violinist, second violinist, violist, and cellist forming a group for the performance of string quartets and similar music.

Origin of string quartet

First recorded in 1870–75
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for string quartet

Historical Examples

  • This fact has been the cause of many so-called transcriptions of orchestral or string-quartet music for the organ.

    Music: An Art and a Language

    Walter Raymond Spalding


British Dictionary definitions for string quartet

string quartet

noun music
  1. an instrumental ensemble consisting of two violins, one viola, and one cello
  2. a piece of music written for such a group, usually having the form and commonest features of a sonata
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

string quartet in Culture

string quartet

A musical group that includes two violins, a viola, and a cello. The term also refers to a composition written for these four instruments. Many composers, notably Franz Josef Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig van Beethoven, have written string quartets.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.