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Related to mordent: upper mordent
A melodic ornament in which a principal tone is rapidly alternated with the tone a half or full step below.
[German, from Italian mordente, from mordere, to bite, from Vulgar Latin *mordere, from Latin mordēre; see mer- in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Music, other) music a melodic ornament consisting of the rapid alternation of a note with a note one degree lower than it. Also called: lower mordent
[C19: from German, from Italian mordente, from mordere to bite]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
a melodic embellishment consisting of a rapid alternation of a principal tone with the tone a half or a whole step below it, called single or short when the auxiliary tone occurs once and double or long when this occurs twice or more.
[1800–10; < German < Italian mordente biting < Latin mordent-, s. of mordēns, present participle of mordēre to bite; see -ent]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.