Castrato meaning

kă-strätō, kə-
A singer castrated as a boy to preserve the soprano or contralto range of his voice, esp. in 16th-18th cent. Italy.
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A male who has been castrated, especially a male whose testicles have been removed before puberty in order to retain his boyish voice.
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A male soprano or alto voice produced by castration of the treble singer before puberty, intended to conserve his voice; the singer.
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(literally) Castrated; especially castrated prepubescently.
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A male singer castrated before puberty so as to retain a soprano or alto voice.
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Having, using or containing the voice of a castrato (noun).
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Originally composed for a castrato.

Nowadays, either women or countertenors take the castrato roles.

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Origin of castrato

  • Italian from Latin castrātus past participle of castrāre to castrate castrate

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Italian castrato, from Latin castrō (“to castrate”), likely from caedō (“to cut”).

    From Wiktionary