Definitions

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

  • n. Uniformity or lack of variation in pitch, intonation, or inflection.
  • n. Tedious sameness or repetitiousness: the monotony of daily routine.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Tedium as a result of repetition or a lack of variety.
  • n. The property of a monotonic function.
  • n. The quality of having an unvarying tone or pitch.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A frequent recurrence of the same tone or sound, producing a dull uniformity; absence of variety, as in speaking or singing.
  • n. Any irksome sameness, or want of variety.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Uniformity of tone or sound; want of inflections of voice in speaking or reading; want of cadence or modulation; monotone.
  • n. Tiresome uniformity or lack of variation in any respect; sameness; want of variety.
  • n. In mathematics:
  • n. Continual increase, or continual decrease.
  • n. Unchanging character, neither increasing nor decreasing.

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

  • n. the quality of wearisome constancy, routine, and lack of variety
  • n. constancy of tone or pitch or inflection

Etymologies

Greek monotoniā, from monotonos, monotonous; see monotonous.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the post-Classical Latin monotonia and its etymon the Ancient Greek μονοτονία (monotonia, "sameness of tone”, “monotony"); compare the French monotonie and the Italian monotonia, as well as the later English monotone. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • [Sidenote: Monotony] (4) Remember that monotony is the curse of labor for both child and adult, but that _monotony cannot exist where new intellectual insights are constantly being given_.

    Study of Child Life

  • All she has to break the monotony is the scarce book collection at the horribly deficient community library.

    Key « A Fly in Amber

  • I've been stuck at my mom's place for just over a month now and the monotony is actually wearing me out and zapping my energy worse than the months before when I was stresses as fuck and didn't see myself graduating at all.

    "The mental and diva's hands..."

  • However, any possible monotony is eradicated by this montage's use of the Tito Puente soundtrack.

    A Tribute to Ray Harryhausen

  • When the chord of monotony is stretched most tight, then it breaks with a sound like song (16): in short, it is Romance, not Satire, that springs from Dullness.

    Stone Pastorals: Three Men on the Side of the Horses

  • The repetition of the same themes could create a certain monotony, but his acute analyses and sure touch awaken the same admiration with each new encounter.

    Nobel Prize in Literature 1952 - Presentation Speech

  • Then the monotony is broken and sometimes with violence.

    The Ranch at the Wolverine

  • For all this, &c. -- This burden of the prophet's strains, with dirge-like monotony, is repeated at Isa 9: 12, 17, 21; 10: 4.

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

  • Occasionally its monotony is broken by the passage of a train of emigrant waggons bound west to California or

    Some of our readers

  • I see what people mean by "monotony" - it's kind of as though her accent can drown out the nuances in her voice if one isn't familiar with her voice, but for my money she communicates repressed emotion better than pretty much any other popstar out there.

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