a. A song for two or three unaccompanied voices, developed in Italy in the late 1200s and early 1300s.
b. A short poem, often about love, suitable for being set to music.
a. A polyphonic song using a vernacular text and written for four to six voices, developed in Italy in the 16th century and popular in England in the 1500s and early 1600s.
b. A part song.
[Italian madrigale, probably from dialectal madregal, simple, from Late Latin mātrīcālis, invented, original, from Latin, of the womb, from mātrīx, mātrīc-, womb, from māter, mātr-, mother; see MATER.]
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Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
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