• synonyms

leading tone

noun Music.
  1. the seventh degree of a diatonic scale; subtonic.
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Origin of leading tone

First recorded in 1910–15
Also called leading note.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for leading tone

Historical Examples

  • The embellishment is treated in the same way, but is most effective when the principal tone is the leading-tone, as at b.

    A Treatise on Simple Counterpoint in Forty Lessons

    Friedrich J. Lehmann

  • The resolution to the leading-tone (d) forms an important exception to this rule.

  • Here the leading-tone that is prepared skips to some other chord-tone, while the new leading-tone remains stationary.