[ fawr-tis-uh-moh; Italian fawr-tees-see-maw ]
/ fɔrˈtɪs əˌmoʊ; Italian fɔrˈtis siˌmɔ /


(a direction) very loud.


(a direction) very loudly.

Nearby words

  1. fortified pa,
  2. fortified wine,
  3. fortify,
  4. fortin barometer,
  5. fortis,
  6. fortition,
  7. fortitude,
  8. fortitudinous,
  9. fortnight,
  10. fortnightly

Origin of fortissimo

1715–25; < Italian; superlative of forte forte2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fortissimo

British Dictionary definitions for fortissimo


/ (fɔːˈtɪsɪˌməʊ) music /

adjective, adverb

very loudSymbol: ff


a very loud passage in music

Word Origin for fortissimo

C18: from Italian, from Latin fortissimus, from fortis strong

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 fortissimo


1724, from Italian fortissimo, superlative of forte "loud, strong," from Latin fortis "strong" (see fort).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for fortissimo


[ (fawr-tis-uh-moh) ]

A musical direction meaning “to be performed very loudly”; the opposite of pianissimo.

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.