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noun Music.
  1. a concluding piece or movement.
  2. a voluntary at the end of a church service.
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Origin of postlude

1850–55; post- + -lude < Latin lūdus game, modeled on prelude
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for postlude

Historical Examples

  • The postlude is orchestral, with the chorus speaking above the music.

    Contemporary American Composers

    Rupert Hughes

  • A postlude to a wedding-march and a prelude to a funeral ditto.

  • A postlude to the day's funeral march; a prelude to freedom.

  • Opening with a musical and lyrical prelude, this symphonic composition was to end with a postlude.

    Romain Rolland

    Stefan Zweig

  • For postlude two measures from the cantabile of Chopin's "Funeral March" are used with droll effect.

British Dictionary definitions for postlude


  1. music a final or concluding piece or movement
  2. a voluntary played at the end of a Church service
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Word Origin

C19: from post- + -lude, from Latin lūdus game; compare prelude
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 postlude


1821, from post- + ending abstracted from prelude.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper