legato

[luh-gah-toh; Italian le-gah-taw]
adjective, adverb Music.
smooth and connected; without breaks between the successive tones.
Compare staccato.


Origin:
1805–15; < Italian, past participle of legare < Latin ligāre to bind

nonlegato, adjective
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World English Dictionary
legato (lɪˈɡɑːtəʊ)
 
adj, —adv
1.  to be performed smoothly and connectedly
 
n , -tos
2.  a.  a style of playing in which no perceptible gaps are left between notes
 b.  (as modifier): a legato passage
 
[C19: from Italian, literally: bound]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

legato
1811, from It. legato, lit. "bound," pp. of legare, from L. ligare (see ligament).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Mentions his superbly sculpted legato phrasing, his emotion-charged distinctive timbre, and his smoldering stage presence.
What he lacked were subtlety, moments of elegant phrasing and smooth legato.
If he lacked spontaneity, he sang with suave legato and crisp diction.
He loved to teach, and he understood that the piano could make a singing, legato tone--that it did not have to sound percussive.
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