• synonyms


[leed; German leet]
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noun, plural lied·er [lee-der; German lee-duhr] /ˈli dər; German ˈli dər/.
  1. a typically 19th-century German art song characterized by the setting of a poetic text in either strophic or through-composed style and the treatment of the piano and voice in equal artistic partnership: Schubert lieder.
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Compare art song.

Origin of lied

Borrowed into English from German around 1850–55
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for lieder

chant, paean, ditty, psalm, oratorio, descant, aria, laud, shout, lay, carol, ode, choral, lied, evensong, chorale, canticle, hallelujah, hosanna, alleluia

Examples from the Web for lieder

Historical Examples of lieder

  • Why not be content with song-cycles or ballads, or lieder like Brahms's and Schumann's?

    War Letters of a Public-School Boy

    Paul Jones.

  • (Beilage) pp. 881-896; also reprinted in his Lieder un' Gedanken.

  • "You can call me Lieder, Hans Lieder," he said, and was gone.

    Six Girls and the Tea Room

    Marion Ames Taggart

  • To speak truly, they were more like little cantatas than lieder.


    Romain Rolland

  • Olivia happened to be note-perfect in one or two of the Lieder.

    My Lord Duke

    E. W. Hornung

British Dictionary definitions for lieder


noun plural lieder (ˈliːdə, German ˈliːdər)
  1. music any of various musical settings for solo voice and piano of a romantic or lyrical poem, for which composers such as Schubert, Schumann, and Wolf are famous
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Word Origin for lied

from German: song
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 lieder



"German romantic song," 1852, from German Lied, literally "song," from Middle High German liet, from Old High German liod, from Proto-Germanic *leuthan (see laud). Hence Liederkranz, in reference to German singing societies, literally "garland of songs."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

lieder in Culture



The plural of lied, the German word for “song.” It refers to art songs in German mainly from the nineteenth century. The most notable composer of lieder was Franz Schubert.

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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.