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arpeggio

[ahr-pej-ee-oh, -pej-oh] /ɑrˈpɛdʒ iˌoʊ, -ˈpɛdʒ oʊ/
noun, plural arpeggios. Music.
1.
the sounding of the notes of a chord in rapid succession instead of simultaneously.
2.
a chord thus sounded.
Also called broken chord.
Origin
1735-1745
1735-45; < Italian: literally, a harping, noun derivative of arpeggi(are) to play on the harp (< Germanic; compare Old English hearpi(g)an to harp)
Related forms
arpeggiated, arpeggioed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for arpeggios
  • The music evokes the song's name, revolving around three circling and falling piano arpeggios.
  • At the outset her melodic effects were noticeably sharp, and some arpeggios skimmed: also one trill lapsed a trifle.
British Dictionary definitions for arpeggios

arpeggio

/ɑːˈpɛdʒɪəʊ/
noun (pl) -gios
1.
a chord whose notes are played in rapid succession rather than simultaneously
2.
an ascending and descending figuration used in practising the piano, voice, etc
Word Origin
C18: from Italian, from arpeggiare to perform on the harp, from arpaharp
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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Word Origin and History for arpeggios

arpeggio

n.

1742, from Italian arpeggio, from arpeggiare "to play upon the harp," from arpa "harp," which is of Germanic origin (see harp (n.)). Related: Arpeggiated; arpeggiation.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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