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decrescendo

[dee-kri-shen-doh, dey-; Italian de-kre-shen-daw] /ˌdi krɪˈʃɛn doʊ, ˌdeɪ-; Italian ˌdɛ krɛˈʃɛn dɔ/ Music.
adjective, adverb
1.
gradually reducing force or loudness; diminuendo (opposed to crescendo).
noun, plural decrescendos Italian, decrescendi
[de-kre-shen-dee] /ˌdɛ krɛˈʃɛn di/ (Show IPA)
2.
a gradual reduction in force or loudness.
3.
a decrescendo passage.
Origin of decrescendo
1800-1810
1800-10; < Italian, gerund of decrescere; see decrease
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for decrescendo
Historical Examples
  • He made a decrescendo tinkling, and his lofty features lapsed into their normal mournfulness.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • A descending passage, as a return to tranquillity, requires a decrescendo.

    For Every Music Lover Aubertine Woodward Moore
  • When she had to sustain a note for a couple of bars, I was surprised at the beauty of her crescendo and decrescendo.

  • decrescendo (or diminuendo) al pianissimo means—decrease gradually in power until the pianissimo (or very soft) point is reached.

  • When she sustains her voice for a couple of bars, I am quite surprised at the beauty of her crescendo and decrescendo.

British Dictionary definitions for decrescendo

decrescendo

/ˌdiːkrɪˈʃɛndəʊ/
noun, adjective
1.
another word for diminuendo
Word Origin
Italian, from decrescere to decrease
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 decrescendo
n.

1806, from Italian decrescendo, from Latin decrescere (see decrease (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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17
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