[ ahr-ee-uh, air-ee-uh ]
See synonyms for aria on
  1. an air or melody.

  2. an elaborate melody sung solo with accompaniment, as in an opera or oratorio.

Origin of aria

From Italian, dating back to 1735–45; see origin at air1

Words that may be confused with aria

Words Nearby aria

Other definitions for Aria (2 of 3)

[ ahr-ee-uh, uh-rahy-uh ]

nounClassical Mythology.
  1. a nymph, the mother of Miletus, by Apollo.

Other definitions for -aria (3 of 3)


  1. a suffix occurring in scientific terms of Latin origin, especially in names of biological genera and groups: filaria.

Origin of -aria

<Latin: feminine singular or neuter plural of -ārius-ary Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use aria in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for aria


/ (ˈɑːrɪə) /

  1. an elaborate accompanied song for solo voice from a cantata, opera, or oratorio: See also da capo

Origin of aria

C18: from Italian: tune, air

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

Cultural definitions for aria


[ (ahr-ee-uh) ]

A piece of music for one voice (or occasionally two voices) in an opera, oratorio, or cantata. In contrast with recitative singing, arias are melodious; in contrast with ordinary songs, arias are usually elaborate.

Notes for aria

Some composers, such as Richard Wagner, have felt that arias interrupt the action of opera too much and hence have written operas without them.

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.