Definition of "tone" []

  • Music A sound of distinct pitch, quality, and duration; a note. (noun)
  • Music The interval of a major second in the diatonic scale; a whole step. (noun)
  • Music A recitational melody in a Gregorian chant. (noun)
  • The quality or character of sound. (noun)
  • The characteristic quality or timbre of a particular instrument or voice. (noun)
  • Sound with reference to quality, pitch, or volume (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • (in acoustic analysis) a sound resulting from periodic or regular vibrations, composed either of a simple sinusoidal waveform (pure tone) or of several such waveforms superimposed upon one main one (compound tone) (noun)
  • An interval of a major second; whole tone (noun)
  • Any of several plainsong melodies or other chants used in the singing of psalms (noun)
  • Any of the pitch levels or pitch contours at which a syllable may be pronounced, such as high tone, falling tone, etc (noun)
  • The quality or character of a sound (noun)
  • General aspect, quality, or style (noun)
  • High quality or style (noun)
  • The quality of a given colour, as modified by mixture with white or black; shade; tint (noun)
  • The normal tension of a muscle at rest (noun)
  • The natural firmness of the tissues and normal functioning of bodily organs in health (noun)
  • The overall effect of the colour values and gradations of light and dark in a picture (noun)
  • A colour or shade of colour, including black or grey, of a particular area on a negative or positive that can be distinguished from surrounding lighter or darker areas (noun)
  • To be of a matching or similar tone (to) (verb)
  • To give a tone to or correct the tone of (verb)
  • To soften or change the colour of the tones of (a photographic image) by chemical means (verb)
  • To give greater firmness or strength to (the body or a part of the body) (verb) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "tone" in a sentence
  • "Because the tone can be heard on pairs other than the one you put it on, when tone or tone+ are inappropriate."
  • "_Leading tone_ -- the tone which demands resolution to the tonic (one-half step above it)."
  • "There is no particular basis for this theory, for although all scales must of course begin with the key-tone or tonic, this tonic may be referred to by any syllable which will serve as a basis for an association process enabling one to feel the force of the tone as a closing point -- a _home tone_."