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  1. one of a class of German lyric poets and singers of the 12th, 13th, and 14th centuries.
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Origin of minnesinger

1815–25; < German, equivalent to Minne love + Singer singer
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for minnesinger

Historical Examples

  • Of Vogelwied, the Minnesinger, and his bequest to the birds.

    The Works of Whittier, Volume VII (of VII)

    John Greenleaf Whittier

  • Yet, Ssskind von Trimberg was at once a Jew and a minnesinger.

  • His last production as a minnesinger was a prescription for a "virtue-electuary."

  • The era of the minnesinger has been divided into three periods.

    How Music Developed

    W. J. Henderson

  • He began his career as a minnesinger, but later on entered a monastery.

British Dictionary definitions for minnesinger


  1. one of the German lyric poets and musicians of the 12th to 14th centuries
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Word Origin

C19: from German: love-singer
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 minnesinger


one of a class of medieval German poets who imitated the troubadours, 1825, from German minnesinger, from minne "love," especially "sexual love" (from Old High German minna "loving memory," originally "memory;" see mind (n.)) + singer (see singer). German minne by c.1500 no longer was considered decent, and it became a taboo word until revived 18c. in poetic language.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper