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[kwin-tet] /kwɪnˈtɛt/
any set or group of five persons or things.
an organized group of five singers or players.
a musical composition scored for five voices or instruments.
Also, quintette.
1805-15; < French quintette < Italian quintetto, diminutive of quinto fifth < Latin quīntus Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for quintet
  • Bliss quintet for clarinet and strings, with frederick thurston.
British Dictionary definitions for quintet


a group of five singers or instrumentalists or a piece of music composed for such a group
any group of five
Word Origin
C19: from Italian quintetto, from quinto fifth
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for quintet

1811, "composition for five voices," from Italian quintetto, diminutive of quinto "fifth," from Latin quintus "the fifth," related to quinque "five" (see quinque-). Meaning "set of five singers or players" is from 1882.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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quintet in Culture

quintet definition

A group of five musicians; also, a piece of music for five instruments or voices.

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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Encyclopedia Article for quintet

a musical composition for five instruments or voices; also, a group of five musicians performing such a composition

Learn more about quintet with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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