Definitions for: Tenor

[n] the pitch range of the highest male voice
[n] pervading note of an utterance; "I could follow the general tenor of his argument"
[n] the adult male singing voice above baritone
[n] an adult male with a tenor voice
[adj] of or close in range to the highest natural adult male voice; "tenor voice"
[adj] (of a musical instrument) intermediate between alto and baritone or bass; "a tenor sax"

Webster (1913) Definition: Ten"or, n. [L., from tenere to hold; hence, properly, a
holding on in a continued course: cf. F. teneur. See
Tenable, and cf. Tenor a kind of voice.]
1. A state of holding on in a continuous course; manner of
continuity; constant mode; general tendency; course;

Along the cool sequestered vale of life They kept
the noiseless tenor of their away. --Gray.

2. That course of thought which holds on through a discourse;
the general drift or course of thought; purport; intent;
meaning; understanding.

When it [the bond] is paid according to the tenor.

Does not the whole tenor of the divine law
positively require humility and meekness to all men?

3. Stamp; character; nature.

This success would look like chance, if it were
perpetual, and always of the same tenor. --Dryden.

4. (Law) An exact copy of a writing, set forth in the words
and figures of it. It differs from purport, which is only
the substance or general import of the instrument.

5. [F. t['e]nor, L. tenor, properly, a holding; -- so called
because the tenor was the voice which took and held the
principal part, the plain song, air, or tune, to which the
other voices supplied a harmony above and below: cf. It.
tenore.] (Mus.)
(a) The higher of the two kinds of voices usually
belonging to adult males; hence, the part in the
harmony adapted to this voice; the second of the four
parts in the scale of sounds, reckoning from the base,
and originally the air, to which the other parts were
(b) A person who sings the tenor, or the instrument that
play it.

Old Tenor, New Tenor, Middle Tenor, different
descriptions of paper money, issued at different periods,
by the American colonial governments in the last century.

Synonyms: high, high-pitched, strain, tenor voice

See Also: Caruso, Domingo, drift, Enrico Caruso, high frequency, high pitch, John McCormick, Lauritz Lebrecht Hommel Melchior, Lauritz Melchior, Luciano Pavarotti, McCormick, meaning, Melchior, Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, purport, singer, singing voice, substance, vocaliser, vocalist, vocalizer

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