or bar·y·tone



a male voice or voice part intermediate between tenor and bass.
a singer with such a voice.
a large, valved brass instrument shaped like a trumpet or coiled in oval form, used especially in military bands.


of or relating to a baritone; having the compass of a baritone.

Origin of baritone

1600–10; < Italian baritono low voice < Greek barýtonos deep-sounding. See barytone2
Related formsbar·i·ton·al, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for baritone

Contemporary Examples of baritone

Historical Examples of baritone

  • His voice seemed weak and high-pitched in comparison to the Hunter's baritone.

    The Link

    Alan Edward Nourse

  • There, to his surprise, he beheld the author of the baritone performance that had been puzzling him.


    Mayne Reid

  • The baritone had not seen her but he had been told that she was very fine.


    James Joyce

  • The baritone was asked what did he think of Mrs. Kearney's conduct.


    James Joyce

  • The tenor had a name with fourteen letters, and the baritone only owned four.

British Dictionary definitions for baritone



the second lowest adult male voice, having a range approximately from G an eleventh below middle C to F a fourth above it
a singer with such a voice
the second lowest instrument in the families of the saxophone, horn, oboe, etc


relating to or denoting a baritonea baritone part
denoting the second lowest instrument in a familythe baritone horn

Word Origin for baritone

C17: from Italian baritono a deep voice, from Greek barutonos deep-sounding, from barus heavy, low + tonos tone
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 baritone

c.1600, from Italian baritono, from Greek barytonos "deep-toned, deep-sounding," from barys "heavy, deep," also, of sound, "strong, deep, bass" (see grave (adj.)) + tonos "tone" (see tenet). Technically, "ranging from lower A in bass clef to lower F in treble clef." Meaning "singer having a baritone voice" is from 1821. As a type of brass band instrument, it is attested from 1949.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

baritone in Culture


A range of the male singing voice higher than bass and lower than tenor.

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.