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Meaning of DESCANT

Pronunciation:  des'kant

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  a decorative musical accompaniment (often improvised) added above a basic melody
  2. [v]  talk at great length about something of one's interest
  3. [v]  sing by changing register; sing by yodeling; "The Austrians were yodeling in the mountains"
  4. [v]  sing in descant

DESCANT is a 7 letter word that starts with D.


 Synonyms: discant, warble, yodel
 See Also: accompaniment, discourse, discuss, musical accompaniment, sing, sing, support, talk about



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
  1. \Des"cant\ (d[e^]s"k[a^]nt), n. [OF. descant, deschant,
    F. d['e]chant, discant, LL. discantus, fr. L. dis + cantus
    singing, melody, fr. canere to sing. See {Chant}, and cf.
    {Descant}, v. i., {Discant}.]
    1. (Mus.)
       (a) Originally, a double song; a melody or counterpoint
           sung above the plain song of the tenor; a variation of
           an air; a variation by ornament of the main subject or
           plain song.
       (b) The upper voice in part music.
       (c) The canto, cantus, or soprano voice; the treble.
                 Twenty doctors expound one text twenty ways, as
                 children make descant upon plain song.
                 She [the nightingale] all night long her amorous
                 descant sung.                     --Milton.
    Note: The term has also been used synonymously with
          counterpoint, or polyphony, which developed out of the
          French d['e]chant, of the 12th century.
    2. A discourse formed on its theme, like variations on a
       musical air; a comment or comments.
             Upon that simplest of themes how magnificent a
             descant!                              --De Quincey.
  2. \Des*cant"\ (d[e^]s*k[a^]nt"), v. i. [imp. & p. p.
    {Descanted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Descanting}.] [From descant;
    n.; or directly fr. OF. descanter, deschanter; L. dis- +
    cantare to sing.]
    1. To sing a variation or accomplishment.
    2. To comment freely; to discourse with fullness and
       particularity; to discourse at large.
             A virtuous man should be pleased to find people
             descanting on his actions.            --Addison.
Thesaurus Terms
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