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See more synonyms for ode on Thesaurus.com
  1. a lyric poem typically of elaborate or irregular metrical form and expressive of exalted or enthusiastic emotion.
  2. (originally) a poem intended to be sung.
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Origin of ode

1580–90; < Middle French < Late Latin ōda < Greek ōidḗ, contraction of aoidḗ song, derivative of aeídein to sing
Can be confusedode owed


  1. a suffix of nouns, appearing in loanwords from Greek, where it meant “like”; used in the formation of compound words: phyllode.
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Compare -oid.

Origin of -ode1

< Greek -ōdēs, probably generalized from adjectives describing smells, as kēṓdēs smelling like incense; base ōd- of ózein to smell, give off odor


  1. a combining form meaning “way,” “road,” used in the formation of compound words: anode; electrode.
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Origin of -ode2

< Greek -odos, combining form of hodós
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for ode

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The practical result of the Ode was a pension of 200 a year conferred on him by Queen Anne.


    Edward J. Dent

  • You have given new beauties to the charming Ode which you have transmitted to me.

    Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • Poor Collins' Ode to the Passions, on and off the stage, is torn to very tatters.

  • And do you think that the ode is a good composition, and true?

  • "I'll write an ode for you upon any subject that you may set me," I challenged him.

    The Strolling Saint

    Raphael Sabatini

British Dictionary definitions for ode


  1. a lyric poem, typically addressed to a particular subject, with lines of varying lengths and complex rhythmsSee also Horatian ode, Pindaric ode
  2. (formerly) a poem meant to be sung
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Word Origin

C16: via French from Late Latin ōda, from Greek ōidē, from aeidein to sing


n combining form
  1. denoting resemblancenematode
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Word Origin

from Greek -ōdēs, from eidos shape, form


n combining form
  1. denoting a path or wayelectrode
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Word Origin

from Greek -odos, from hodos a way
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 ode


1580s, from Middle French ode (c.1500), from Late Latin ode "lyric song," from Greek oide, Attic contraction of aoide "song, ode;" related to aeidein (Attic aidein) "to sing;" aoidos (Attic oidos) "a singer, singing;" aude "voice, tone, sound," probably from a PIE *e-weid-, perhaps from root *wed- "to speak." In classical use, "a poem intended to be sung;" in modern use usually a rhymed lyric, often an address, usually dignified, rarely extending to 150 lines. Related: Odic.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

ode in Medicine


  1. Way; path:electrode.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

ode in Culture


A kind of poem devoted to the praise of a person, animal, or thing. An ode is usually written in an elevated style and often expresses deep feeling. An example is “Ode on a Grecian Urn,” by John Keats.

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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.