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Meaning of crescendo

cre•scen•do

Pronunciation: (kri-shen'dō, -sen'dōIt.kre-shen'dô), [key]
— n., pl. adj., adv., v. -dos, -di
—n.
  1. The crescendo by the violins is too abrupt.
    1. a gradual, steady increase in loudness or force.
    2. a musical passage characterized by such an increase.
    3. the performance of a crescendo passage:The crescendo by the violins is too abrupt.
  2. a steady increase in force or intensity: The rain fell in a crescendo on the rooftops.
  3. the climactic point or moment in such an increase; peak: The authorities finally took action when public outrage reached a crescendo.
—adj., adv.
  1. gradually increasing in force, volume, or loudness (opposed to decrescendo or diminuendo).
—v.i.
  1. to grow in force or loudness.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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