prick song


noun Archaic.

written music.

Origin of prick song

1400–50; late Middle English, short for pricked song Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for prick song

Historical Examples of prick song

  • Well said, wench; and the prick-song we use shall be our husbands.

  • This time they are speaking, not of descant, but of Prick-song.

    Shakespeare and Music

    Edward W. Naylor

  • Prick-Song, music pricked or noted down, full of flourish and variety.

  • The point was that it should be extempore; if written down it ceased to be true descant, and was then called 'prick-song.'

    Shakespeare and Music

    Edward W. Naylor

  • Any song which was printed in various parts was called a prick-song, to distinguish it from one sung extemporaneously or by ear.

British Dictionary definitions for prick song

prick song


  1. a piece of written vocal music
  2. vocal music sung from a copy

Word Origin for prick song

C16: from pricked song, prickt song, from prick (in the sense: to mark out, notate)
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