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Canto - Definition

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Definition of: Canto

Poetry Definition

The subdivision of a long narrative poem e.g. in The Divine Comedy by Dante. Spenser was the first English poet to use cantos. The Cantos is a long (some would say too long) poem by Ezra Pound.

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Standard Definition

[n] a major division of a long poem
[n] the highest part (usually the melody) in a piece of choral music

Misc. Definitions

\Can"to\, n.; pl. {Cantos}. [It. canto, fr. L. cantus singing, song. See {Chant}.]
1. One of the chief divisions of a long poem; a book.
2. (Mus.) The highest vocal part; the air or melody in choral music; anciently the tenor, now the soprano. {Canto fermo}[It.] (Mus.), the plain ecclesiastical chant in cathedral service; the plain song.

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