sonata

[ suh-nah-tuh ]
/ səˈnɑ tə /

noun Music.

a composition for one or two instruments, typically in three or four movements in contrasted forms and keys.

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Origin of sonata

1685–95; <Italian <Latin sonāta, feminine of sonātus (past participle of sonāre to sound1). See sonant, -ate1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for sonata

British Dictionary definitions for sonata

sonata
/ (səˈnɑːtə) /

noun

an instrumental composition, usually in three or more movements, for piano alone (piano sonata) or for any other instrument with or without piano accompaniment (violin sonata, cello sonata, etc)See also sonata form, symphony (def. 1), concerto (def. 1)
a one-movement keyboard composition of the baroque period

Word Origin for sonata

C17: from Italian, from sonare to sound, from Latin
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

Cultural definitions for sonata

sonata
[ (suh-nah-tuh) ]

A musical composition for one or two instruments, usually in three or four movements. The sonata of the classic era in music had a definite arrangement for its movements: the first and fourth had a fast tempo, the second had a slow tempo, and the third was in either playful style (a “scherzo”) or in dance form (a “minuet”).

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.