Definitions

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

  • n. A harsh, disagreeable combination of sounds; discord.
  • n. Lack of agreement, consistency, or harmony; conflict: "In Vietnam, reality fell away and dissonance between claim and fact filled the void” ( Michael Janeway).
  • n. Music A combination of tones contextually considered to suggest unrelieved tension and require resolution.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a harsh, discordant combination of sounds
  • n. conflicting notes that are not overtones of the note or chord sounding
  • n. a state of disagreement or conflict

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A mingling of discordant sounds; an inharmonious combination of sounds; discord.
  • n. Want of agreement; incongruity.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The quality or fact of being dissonant; an inharmonious mixture or combination of sounds; harshness of combined sounds; discord.
  • n. Specifically— In music: The combination of tones that are so far unrelated to each other as to produce beats: distinguished from consonance. See beat, n.
  • n. The interval between two such tones. See discord.
  • n. Discord in general; disagreement; incongruity; inconsistency.

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

  • n. a conflict of people's opinions or actions or characters
  • n. the auditory experience of sound that lacks musical quality; sound that is a disagreeable auditory experience
  • n. disagreeable sounds

Etymologies

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