American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. One of a class of 12th-century and 13th-century lyric poets in Southern France, northern Italy, and northern Spain, who composed songs in langue d'oc often about courtly love.
- n. A strolling minstrel.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. One of a class of early poets who first appeared in Provence, France. The troubadours were considered the inventors of a species of lyrical poetry, characterized by an almost entire devotion to the subject of chivalric love, and generally very complicated in regard to meter and rime. They flourished from the eleventh to the latter part of the thirteenth century, principally in the south of France, Catalonia, Aragon, and northern Italy. The most renowned among the tronbadours were knights who cultivated music and poetry as a polite accomplishment; but the art declined, and in its later days was chiefly cultivated by an inferior class of minstrels. See
- n. An itinerant composer and performer of songs in medieval Europe; a jongleur or travelling minstrel.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. One of a school of poets who flourished from the eleventh to the thirteenth century, principally in Provence, in the south of France, and also in the north of Italy. They invented, and especially cultivated, a kind of lyrical poetry characterized by intricacy of meter and rhyme, and usually of a romantic, amatory strain.
- n. a singer of folk songs
- Old Provençal trobar ("to find") via Old French troubadour (Wiktionary)
- French, from Provençal trobador, from Old Provençal, from trobar, to compose, perhaps from Vulgar Latin *tropāre, from Late Latin tropus, trope, song, from Latin, trope; see trope. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“Maybe it's because he's a fresh-faced Midwesterner, but you never hear the word troubadour associated with Josh Rouse despite rambling ways that have taken him around the world”
“The word troubadour could have been invented for Matt Epp. Since emerging out of Winnipeg,”
“The troubadour was a very different person, generally a noble who wrote poems, set them to music, and employed _jongleurs_ to sing and play them.”
“My vote goes for nearly any of Springsteen's "troubadour" songs.”
“Before that, a student was a kind of troubadour, a cross between a monk and a crusader, a knight-errant of love and letters, and the moral code for him did not apply.”
“Pons hitherto had dined abroad, eluding her desire to have both of "her gentlemen" entirely under her management; his "troubadour" collector's life had scared away certain vague ideas which hovered in La Cibot's brain; but now her shadowy projects assumed the formidable shape of a definite plan, dating from that memorable dinner.”
“His more inflected notes and husky sincerity here belong to his wistful "troubadour" phase, making up in sheer hypnotic beauty what his vocalizations later gained in incantatory power.”
“NPR says, "She's a kind of troubadour for the 21st century, gracefully channeling '60s psychedelic pop and folk and retooling it to fit her own imaginative stylings.”
“From the latter: The great Alex Chilton is gone — folk troubadour, blues shouter, master singer, songwriter and guitarist.”
“Ray Davies – former Kink and current Meltdown curator – slings on a guitar, preparing to accompany the Canadian troubadour on a version of the Kinks 1978 track 'Misfits'.”
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