[ gli-sahn-doh ]
/ glɪˈsɑn doʊ /


performed with a gliding effect by sliding one or more fingers rapidly over the keys of a piano or strings of a harp.

noun, plural glis·san·di [gli-sahn-dee] /glɪˈsɑn di/.

a glissando passage.
(in string playing) a slide.

Nearby words

  1. glioneuroma,
  2. gliosarcoma,
  3. gliosis,
  4. glipizide,
  5. glissade,
  6. glisson's capsule,
  7. glissonitis,
  8. glisten,
  9. glister,
  10. glitch

Origin of glissando

1870–75; < French gliss(er) to slide + Italian -ando gerund ending Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for glissando

British Dictionary definitions for glissando


/ (ɡlɪˈsændəʊ) /

noun plural -di (-diː) or -dos

a rapidly executed series of notes on the harp or piano, each note of which is discretely audible
a portamento, esp as executed on the violin, viola, etc

Word Origin for glissando

C19: probably Italianized variant of glissade

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 glissando



1873, Italianized form of French glissant, present participle of glisser (see glissade).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper