rhythm

[rith-uhm]
See more synonyms for rhythm on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. movement or procedure with uniform or patterned recurrence of a beat, accent, or the like.
  2. Music.
    1. the pattern of regular or irregular pulses caused in music by the occurrence of strong and weak melodic and harmonic beats.
    2. a particular form of this: duple rhythm; triple rhythm.
  3. measured movement, as in dancing.
  4. Art, Literature. a patterned repetition of a motif, formal element, etc., at regular or irregular intervals in the same or a modified form.
  5. the effect produced in a play, film, novel, etc., by the combination or arrangement of formal elements, as length of scenes, speech and description, timing, or recurrent themes, to create movement, tension, and emotional value in the development of the plot.
  6. Prosody.
    1. metrical or rhythmical form; meter; cadence.
    2. a particular kind of metrical form.
    3. metrical movement.
  7. the pattern of recurrent strong and weak accents, vocalization and silence, and the distribution and combination of these elements in speech.
  8. Physiology. the regular recurrence of an action or function, as of the beat of the heart, or the menstrual cycle.
  9. procedure marked by the regular recurrence of particular elements, phases, etc.: the rhythm of the seasons.
  10. regular recurrence of elements in a system of motion.

Origin of rhythm

1550–60; < Latin rhythmus < Greek rhythmós; compare rheîn to flow
Related formsrhythm·less, adjectivenon·rhythm, noun
Can be confusedrhyme rhythm

Synonyms for rhythm

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


Examples from the Web for rhythms

Contemporary Examples of rhythms

Historical Examples of rhythms

  • To do this in poetry is the supreme distinction not of rhythms, but of words.

    The Lyric

    John Drinkwater

  • To say what these rhythms are will be your duty—you must teach me them, as you have already taught me the harmonies.

  • But this cataract of dried leaves, too, is a study in the rhythms of the dead.

  • But since life has got two rhythms, why should art have only one?

    Laurus Nobilis

    Vernon Lee

  • Among the other 2-4 rhythms are the Polka, suitable for Ballet work.


British Dictionary definitions for rhythms

rhythm

noun
    1. the arrangement of the relative durations of and accents on the notes of a melody, usually laid out into regular groups (bars) of beats, the first beat of each bar carrying the stress
    2. any specific arrangement of such groupings; timequadruple rhythm
  1. (in poetry)
    1. the arrangement of words into a more or less regular sequence of stressed and unstressed or long and short syllables
    2. any specific such arrangement; metre
  2. (in painting, sculpture, architecture, etc) a harmonious sequence or pattern of masses alternating with voids, of light alternating with shade, of alternating colours, etc
  3. any sequence of regularly recurring functions or events, such as the regular recurrence of certain physiological functions of the body, as the cardiac rhythm of the heartbeat
Derived Formsrhythmless, adjective

Word Origin for rhythm

C16: from Latin rhythmus, from Greek rhuthmos; related to rhein to flow
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 rhythms

rhythm

n.

1550s, "rhymed verse, metrical movement," from Latin rhythmus "movement in time," from Greek rhythmos "measured flow or movement, rhythm; proportion, symmetry; arrangement, order; form, shape, wise, manner; soul, disposition," related to rhein "to flow," from PIE root *sreu- "to flow" (see rheum). Rhythm method of birth control attested from 1936. Rhythm and blues, U.S. music style, is from 1949 (first in "Billboard").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

rhythms in Medicine

rhythm

[rĭðəm]
n.
  1. Movement or variation characterized by the regular recurrence or alternation of different quantities or conditions, as in the heartbeat.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

rhythms in Culture

rhythm

The “beat” of music; the regular pattern of long and short notes. Certain kinds of music, such as blues or marches, have a very characteristic rhythm. Rhythm, harmony, and melody are elements of music.

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.