• synonyms


[met-soh, med-zoh, mez-oh]
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  1. middle; medium; half.
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noun, plural mez·zos.
  1. a mezzo-soprano.
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Origin of mezzo

1805–15; < Italian < Latin medius middle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for mezzo

Historical Examples

  • The “Mezzo Cammin” is a line too narrow for their eager steps.

    The Idler Magazine, Vol III. May 1893


  • Galli had a mezzo soprano voice, and first appeared at the Opera House.


    George Bryan

  • Sir John Hawkins derives passamezzo from passer, to walk, and mezzo, the middle or half.

  • We can all think of singers whose natural quality is mezzo—let us say—who try to force the voice up into a higher register.

    Vocal Mastery

    Harriette Brower

  • It is no longer a soprano; it is a mezzo and must be judged by quite different standards.

British Dictionary definitions for mezzo


  1. moderately; quitemezzo forte; mezzo piano
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noun plural -zos
  1. See mezzo-soprano (def. 1)
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Word Origin

C19: from Italian, literally: half, from Latin medius middle
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 mezzo


"half, moderate," Italian mezzo, literally "middle," from Latin medius (see medial (adj.)). Also used in combinations such as mezzo-soprano (1753) and mezzotint (1738).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper