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diapason

[dahy-uh-pey-zuh n, -suh n] /ˌdaɪ əˈpeɪ zən, -sən/
noun, Music.
1.
a full, rich outpouring of melodious sound.
2.
the compass of a voice or instrument.
3.
a fixed standard of pitch.
4.
either of two principal timbres or stops of a pipe organ, one of full, majestic tone (open diapason) and the other of strong, flutelike tone (stopped diapason)
5.
any of several other organ stops.
6.
a tuning fork.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English diapasoun < Latin diapāsōn the whole octave < Greek dià pāsôn (chordôn) through all (the notes), short for hē dià pāsôn chordôn symphōnía the concord through all the notes of the scale
Related forms
diapasonal, adjective
subdiapason, noun
subdiapasonal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for diapason

diapason

/ˌdaɪəˈpeɪzən; -ˈpeɪsən/
noun (music)
1.
either of two stops (open and stopped diapason) usually found throughout the compass of a pipe organ that give it its characteristic tone colour
2.
the compass of an instrument or voice
3.
(chiefly in French usage)
  1. a standard pitch used for tuning, esp the now largely obsolete one of A above middle C = 435 hertz, known as diapason normal (French(djapazɔ̃ nɔrmal)
  2. a tuning fork or pitch pipe
4.
(in classical Greece) an octave
Derived Forms
diapasonal, diapasonic (ˌdaɪəpeɪˈzɒnɪk; -ˈsɒn-) adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Latin: the whole octave, from Greek: () dia pasōn (khordōn sumphōnia) (concord) through all (the notes), from dia through + pas all
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
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Encyclopedia Article for diapason

(from Greek dia pason chordon: "through all the strings"), in medieval music, the interval, or distance between notes, encompassing all degrees of the scale-i.e., the octave. In French, diapason indicates the range of a voice and is also the word for a tuning fork and for pitch

Learn more about diapason with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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