from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Music An embellishing note, usually one step above or below the note it precedes and indicated by a small note or special sign.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A type of musical ornament, falling on the beat, which often creates a suspension and subtracts for itself half the time value of the principal note which follows.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A passing tone preceding an essential tone, and borrowing the time it occupies from that; a short auxiliary or grace note one degree above or below the principal note unless it be of the same harmony; -- generally indicated by a note of smaller size, as in the illustration above. It forms no essential part of the harmony.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In music, a small additional note of embellishment, preceding the note with which it is connected, and taking away from that note a portion of its time.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an embellishing note usually written in smaller size


Italian, from appoggiato, past participle of appoggiare, to lean on, from Vulgar Latin *appodiāre : Latin ad-, ad- + Latin podium, support (from Greek podion, base, from pous, pod-, foot; see ped- in Indo-European roots).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Borrowed from Italian appoggiatura, derived from appoggiare ("to lean"). (Wiktionary)


  • The appoggiatura was formerly classified into _long appoggiatura_ and _short appoggiatura_, but modern writers seem to consider the term "short appoggiatura" to be synonymous with acciaccatura [12], and to avoid confusion the word _acciaccatura_ will be used in this sense, and defined under its own heading.

    Music Notation and Terminology

  • Participants identified 20 tear-triggering passages, and when Dr. Sloboda analyzed their properties, a trend emerged: 18 contained a musical device called an "appoggiatura."

    Anatomy of a Tear-Jerker

  • An appoggiatura is a type of ornamental note that clashes with the melody just enough to create a dissonant sound.

    Anatomy of a Tear-Jerker

  • Link lies and little deaths special presentation: "appoggiatura" by jeff vandermeer updated

    squeak buddha

  • The turns of music consist of the appoggiatura which is the principal note, or that on which the turn is made, together with the note above and the semi-tone below, the note above being sounded first, the principal note next and the semi-tone below, last, the three being performed sticatoly, or very quickly.

    Gov. Bob. Taylor's Tales

  • Lors des championnats les plus récents, les mots qui ont permis aux gagnants de remporter la victoire ont été pococurante, autochthonous, appoggiatura, ursprache, serrefine, guerdon et Laodicean.

    Archive 2010-07-01

  • The winning words in recent competitions have included: pococurante; autochthonous; appoggiatura; ursprache; serrefine; guerdon; Laodicean.

    Archive 2010-06-01

  • It's called an appoggiatura. (though I've seen it written with only one "g") appoggiatura n.

    McCain: If I Bring Up Ayers At Debate, It Will Be Obama's Fault

  • On the word "Virgo," the altos sing a dissonant appoggiatura G-sharp.

    A Chant-related Google Alert (Yes!)

  • The California eighth grader won in the 19th round by correctly spelling the word appoggiatura.

    CNN Transcript Jun 2, 2005

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.