[fer-mah-tuh; Italian fer-mah-tah]
- the sustaining of a note, chord, or rest for a duration longer than the indicated time value, with the length of the extension at the performer's discretion.
- a symbol placed over a note, chord, or rest indicating a fermata.
Origin of fermata
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for fermata
He bounced around between bands for a while before joining a band named Fermata as a bassist.‘Free Willy’ Turns 20: Catching Up With Star Jason James Richter
July 16, 2013
Dr. Deiters thought that Ries confounded the last with the first movement, in which the clarinet enters after a fermata.The Life of Ludwig van Beethoven, Volume I (of 3)
Alexander Wheelock Thayer
In the case of a hold (fermata), the movement for the cut-off depends upon the nature of what follows.Essentials in Conducting
Karl Wilson Gehrkens
A fermata in the middle of a movement does not constitute a break, neither need it at the end.The Pianoforte Sonata
- music another word for pause (def. 5)
from Italian, from fermare to stop, from Latin firmāre to establish; see firm 1
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 fermata
1876, musical term, Italian, literally "stop, pause," from fermare "to fasten, to stop," from fermo "strong, fastened," from Latin firmus (see firm (adj.)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper