overtone
Pronunciation
  • (America) IPA: /ˈoʊvɚtoʊn/
  • (British) IPA: /ˈəʊ.və.təʊn/
Noun

overtone (plural overtones)

  1. (physics, music) A tone whose frequency is an integer multiple of another; a member of the harmonic series. [from 1867]
  2. (figuratively, often, in plural) An implicit message (in a film, book, verbal discussion or similar) perceived as overwhelming the explicit message. [from 1890]
    Antonyms: undertone
Translations
  • French: partiel
  • German: Oberton
  • Russian: оберто́н
  • Spanish: sobretono
Translations Verb

overtone (overtones, present participle overtoning; past and past participle overtoned)

  1. (transitive) To give an overtone to.
    • 1860, The Art Journal (page 39)
      The flesh tints appear to have been darkened by being overworked; the draperies are overtoned in the same way […]
    • 1977, Sol Dember, ‎Steven A. Dember, ‎Jeffrey H. Dember, Drawing & painting the world of animals (page 55)
      The background is now rendered by using meadow green with a stick pastel around the lower area under the lynx in an irregular fashion, and overtoning the areas closer to the animal with an irregular application of leaf green color.
    • 2011, Jerrold Levinson, Music, Art, and Metaphysics
      Can you imagine, finally, the opening of Janácek's Sinfonietta, with its richly overtoned, overlapping fanfares, performed not by brass but by a consort of oboes—even very loud ones?



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