[ka-strah-toh, kuh-; Italian kah-strah-taw]

noun, plural cas·tra·ti [ka-strah-tee, kuh-; Italian kah-strah-tee] /kæˈstrɑ ti, kə-; Italian kɑˈstrɑ ti/.

a male singer, especially in the 18th century, castrated before puberty to prevent his soprano or contralto voice range from changing.

Nearby words

  1. castoreum,
  2. castrate,
  3. castrati,
  4. castration,
  5. castration complex,
  6. castries,
  7. castriota, george,
  8. castro,
  9. castro valley,
  10. castro, cipriano

Origin of castrato

1755–65; < Italian < Latin castrāt(us); see castrate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for castrati

British Dictionary definitions for castrati


noun plural -ti (-tɪ) or -tos

(in 17th- and 18th-century opera) a male singer whose testicles were removed before puberty, allowing the retention of a soprano or alto voice

Word Origin for castrato

C18: from Italian, from Latin castrātus castrated

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 castrati
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper