- The definition of crescendo is something that gradually gets louder.
An example of crescendo is a part of a song where the volume increases gradually.
- Crescendo is defined as something, such as music, that gradually gets louder or more intense.
An example of a crescendo is a part of a song that gradually gets louder.
- To crescendo means to gradually grow in volume or intensity.
An example of crescendo is when a song starts gradually getting louder.
Origin of crescendoItalian gerund, gerundive of crescere: see crescent
- a gradual increase in loudness
- a crescendo passage
- any gradual increase in force, intensity, etc.
nounpl. cres·cen·dos or cres·cen·di
- Abbr. cr. Music a. A gradual increase in the volume or intensity of sound in a passage.b. A passage played with a gradual increase in volume or intensity.
- a. A steady increase in intensity or force: “insisted [that] all paragraphs &ellipsis; should be structured as a crescendo rising to a climactic last sentence” (Henry A. Kissinger).b. Usage Problem The climactic point or moment after such a progression: “The attacks &ellipsis; began in December &ellipsis; and reached a crescendo during [the president's] September visit” (Foreign Affairs).
intransitive verbcres·cen·doed, cres·cen·do·ing, cres·cen·does
Origin of crescendoItalian, present participle of crescere, to increase, from Latin crēscere; see ker-2 in Indo-European roots. Usage Note: Crescendo is sometimes used to refer to a climax or peak, as in noise level, rather than an increase. The Usage Panel has mixed feelings about this usage, though the evidence suggests that acceptance of it is slowly increasing. In our 1988 survey, 55 percent of the Usage Panel rejected it in the sentence When the guard sank a three-pointer to tie the game, the noise of the crowd reached a crescendo. In 2006, 55 percent accepted this same sentence.
(plural crescendos or crescendi or crescendoes)
- (music) An instruction to play gradually more loudly, denoted by a long, narrow angle with its apex on the left (<).
- (figuratively) A gradual increase of anything, especially to a dramatic climax.
- Their fighting rose in a fearsome crescendo.
- (figuratively, nonstandard) The climax of a gradual increase.
- Their arguing rose to a fearsome crescendo.
- The musical sense indicates that the figurative sense is an increase rather than the climax of the increase. The use of this word to mean the climax of an increase is nonstandard but commonplace.
(third-person singular simple present crescendoes, present participle crescendoing, simple past and past participle crescendoed)
- To increase in intensity, to reach or head for a crescendo.
- The band crescendoed and then suddenly went silent.