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opera1

[op-er-uh, op-ruh] /ˈɒp ər ə, ˈɒp rə/
noun
1.
an extended dramatic composition, in which all parts are sung to instrumental accompaniment, that usually includes arias, choruses, and recitatives, and that sometimes includes ballet.
2.
the form or branch of musical and dramatic art represented by such compositions.
3.
the score or the words of such a composition.
4.
a performance of one:
to go to the opera.
5.
(sometimes initial capital letter) an opera house or resident company:
the Paris Opera.
Origin
1635-1645
1635-45; < Italian: work, opera < Latin, plural of opus service, work, a work, opus

opera2

[oh-per-uh, op-er-uh] /ˈoʊ pər ə, ˈɒp ər ə/
noun, Chiefly Music.
1.
a plural of opus.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for operas
  • However, the present day company presents a season of five or six operas.
British Dictionary definitions for operas

opera1

/ˈɒpərə; ˈɒprə/
noun
1.
an extended dramatic work in which music constitutes a dominating feature, either consisting of separate recitatives, arias, and choruses, or having a continuous musical structure
2.
the branch of music or drama represented by such works
3.
the score, libretto, etc, of an opera
4.
a theatre where opera is performed
Word Origin
C17: via Italian from Latin: work, a work, plural of opus work

opera2

/ˈɒpərə/
noun
1.
a plural of opus
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 operas

opera

n.

"a drama sung" [Klein], 1640s, from Italian opera, literally "a work, labor, composition," from Latin opera "work, effort" (Latin plural regarded as feminine singular), secondary (abstract) noun from operari "to work," from opus (genitive operis) "a work" (see opus). Defined in "Elson's Music Dictionary" as, "a form of musical composition evolved shortly before 1600, by some enthusiastic Florentine amateurs who sought to bring back the Greek plays to the modern stage."

No good opera plot can be sensible. ... People do not sing when they are feeling sensible. [W.H. Auden, 1961]
As a branch of dramatic art, it is attested from 1759. First record of opera glass "small binoculars for use at the theater" is from 1738. Soap opera is first recorded 1939, as a disparaging reference to daytime radio dramas sponsored by soap manufacturers.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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operas in Culture

opera definition


A musical drama that is totally or mostly sung. A&idie;da, Carmen, and Don Giovanni are some celebrated operas. A light, comic opera is often called an operetta.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for operas

opera

Related Terms

horse opera, oater, soap opera, space opera


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Word Value for operas

8
9
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