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

  • n. The set of syllables do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, and ti, used to represent the tones of the scale.
  • n. Use of these syllables.
  • transitive v. To use the sol-fa syllables or sing using these syllables.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a method of sight singing music that uses the syllables do (originally ut), re, mi, fa, sol (or so), la, and si (or ti) to represent the pitches of the scale, most commonly the major scale. The fixed-do system uses do for C, and the movable-do system uses do for whatever key the melody uses (thus B is do if the piece is in the key of B).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The gamut, or musical scale. See Tonic sol-fa, under tonic, n.
  • intransitive v. To sing the notes of the gamut, ascending or descending.
  • transitive v. To sing to solmization syllables.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In music, to solmizate, or sing solfeggii.
  • In music, to sing to solmizationsyllables instead of to words.
  • n. In music:
  • n. The syllables used in solmization taken collectively; the act or process of solmization; solfeggio; also, rarely, same as scale or gamut.
  • n. See tonic sol-fa, under tonic.
  • n. The roll or baton used by the leaders of Italian choirs.
  • Of or pertaining to solmization in singing: as, the sol-fa method, or tonic sol-fa method.

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

  • n. a system of solmization using the solfa syllables: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti


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

Italian solfa, from Medieval Latin : sol, note of the scale; see gamut + fa, note of the scale; see gamut.


  • He was surrounded by music from birth and learned to sight-sing (that is, to use sol-fa syllables for practicing melodies).

    Frank Loesser

  • The sol-fa scale consists of eight notes comprising an octave; each of the eight notes is one whole tone from the one before it, except for fa and do, which are only a half-tone higher than mi and ti respectively.

    Archive 2006-07-01

  • The notes indicated on the lines or in the spaces of the staff represent those of the sol-fa system the usual do re mi deal.

    Archive 2006-07-01

  • Had not unforeseen anxieties come upon us, no lot on earth could have been more perfectly delicious in the quality of enjoyment, both for body and spirit, than that sojourn upon the wild hill; among ourselves were innocence and union, consequently peace; time was profitably spent; and our recreations were, practice in the tonic sol-fa singing lessons, with sketching and rambling on foot or on horseback over the breezy heights of

    Byeways in Palestine

  • To make the vibrating tongue was fairly easy, but to space the six finger-holes so as to get a sol-fa scale proved to be a matter of trial and error, exasperating to herself and excruciating to her hearers.

    Mrs. Miniver

  • Singing by syllable means that the singer sings the tones of a song or part to the sol-fa syllables instead of to words, neutral vowels or the hum.

    Music Notation and Terminology

  • "Sing by note" is not correct if the direction means simply to sing the sol-fa syllables, whether in sight reading, rote singing, or memory work.

    Music Notation and Terminology

  • The tune of My Country, 'Tis of Thee, as printed in tonic sol-fa notation below will make these points clear.

    Music Notation and Terminology

  • These terms are also often applied to classes in sight-singing which use the sol-fa syllables.

    Music Notation and Terminology

  • In the fifteenth century the leader of the Sistine Choir at Rome directed the singers with a roll of paper (called a "sol-fa"), held in his hand.

    Essentials in Conducting


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  • See also sacred harp.

    February 16, 2008

  • The set of syllables "do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti" sung to the respective notes of the major scale; the system of singing notes to these syllables; a musical scale or exercise thus sung.

    February 15, 2008