whole step

noun Music.

an interval of two semitones, as A-B or B-C♯; a major second.

Origin of whole step

First recorded in 1895–1900
Also called whole·tone.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for whole tone

whole tone

US and Canadian whole step


an interval of two semitones; a frequency difference of 200 cents in the system of equal temperamentOften shortened to: tone
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

whole tone in Culture

whole tone

An interval between musical notes. Do and re are a whole tone apart, as are re and mi, fa and sol, sol and la, and la and ti.

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.