Music. an acoustical frequency that is higher in frequency than the fundamental.
an additional, usually subsidiary and implicit meaning or quality: an aesthetic theory with definite political overtones.

1865–70; translation of German Oberton. See over-, tone

2. insinuation, suggestion, intimation, hint.
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World English Dictionary
overtone (ˈəʊvəˌtəʊn)
1.  (often plural) additional meaning or nuance: overtones of despair
2.  music, acoustics harmonic See also partial any of the tones, with the exception of the fundamental, that constitute a musical sound and contribute to its quality, each having a frequency that is a multiple of the fundamental frequency

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Word Origin & History

1867, in literal sense, from over + tone; a loan-translation of Ger. Oberton, first used by Ger. physicist Hermann Ludwig Ferdinand von Helmholtz (1821-94) as a contraction of Overpartialton "upper partial tone." Fig. sense of "subtle implication" is from 1890, first attested in writings of William James.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
overtone   (ō'vər-tōn')  Pronunciation Key 
See under harmonic.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
And he has drawn a symbolic parallel which has significant implication and
Harmonically, instruments are constrained by overtone reverberations and a
  fixed scale.
The middle note comes from much higher in the overtone series.
There was an ugly overtone to the events today that was not present yesterday.
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