Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A verse form usually consisting of three stanzas of eight or ten lines each along with a brief envoy, with all three stanzas and the envoy ending in the same one-line refrain.
  • noun Music A composition, usually for the piano, having the romantic or dramatic quality of a narrative poem.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A poem consisting of one or more triplets each formed of stanzas of seven or eight lines, the last line being a refrain common to all the stanzas.
  • noun A poem divided into stanzas having the same number of lines, commonly seven or eight.
  • noun In music, a term variously applied to melodies for ballads, to extended narrative or dramatic works for a solo voice, occasionally to concerted choral cantatas, and to instrumental pieces of a melodic character — in the last case often without obvious reason.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A form of French versification, sometimes imitated in English, in which three or four rhymes recur through three stanzas of eight or ten lines each, the stanzas concluding with a refrain, and the whole poem with an envoy.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun music Any of various genres of single-movement musical pieces having lyrical and narrative elements

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

  • noun a poem consisting of 3 stanzas and an envoy

Etymologies

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

[Middle English balade; see ballad.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French ballade

Examples

Comments

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  • Check out the third definition from the Century Dictionary--the Century can be so snarky. I love it!

    March 3, 2011

  • Adorable!

    March 3, 2011

  • I know, right?

    March 3, 2011