follow Dictionary.com

How Well Do You Know English Slang?

antiphon

[an-tuh-fon] /ˈæn təˌfɒn/
noun
1.
a verse or song to be chanted or sung in response.
2.
Ecclesiastical.
  1. a psalm, hymn, or prayer sung in alternate parts.
  2. a verse or a series of verses sung as a prelude or conclusion to some part of the service.
Origin
1490-1500
1490-1500; < Medieval Latin antiphōna responsive singing < Greek () antíphōna, neuter plural of antíphōnos sounding in answer, equivalent to anti- anti- + phōn() sound + -os adj. suffix. Cf. anthem
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for antiphon

antiphon

/ˈæntɪfən/
noun
1.
a short passage, usually from the Bible, recited or sung as a response after certain parts of a liturgical service
2.
a psalm, hymn, etc, chanted or sung in alternate parts
3.
any response or answer
Word Origin
C15: from Late Latin antiphōna sung responses, from Late Greek, plural of antiphōnon (something) responsive, from antiphōnos, from anti- + phōnē sound
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for antiphon
n.

c.1500, "a versicle sung responsively," from Middle French antiphone "hymn" or directly from Medieval Latin antiphona, from Greek antiphona, from anti- "over against" (see anti-) + phone "voice" (see fame (n.)). A re-adoption of the word which had become anthem in English and lost its original meaning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for antiphon

in Roman Catholic liturgical music, chant melody and text sung before and after a psalm verse, originally by alternating choirs (antiphonal singing). The antiphonal singing of psalms was adopted from Hebrew worship by the early Christian churches, notably that of Syria, and was introduced into the West in the 4th century by St. Ambrose. The two choirs both sang the psalm text or, alternatively, one choir sang a short refrain between the psalm verses (V) sung by the other choir. The refrain was called an antiphon (A). The resulting musical form was A V1 A V2 A. Actually, most of the presentations of the antiphon were in abbreviated form. The antiphon text normally referred to the meaning of the feast day or the psalm. Canticles from the New or Old Testament might also be sung in this way

Learn more about antiphon with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for antiphon

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for antiphon

13
15
Scrabble Words With Friends