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victoria Williams Music Theory

Victoria Williams

LmusTCL BA Mus (Hons) MISM

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2. Foreign Terms Alphabetical List

Grade Five Music Theory - Lesson 2: Foreign Terms Alphabetical List


Would you like a free PDF with all the music theory foreign terms grades 1-5? Click here to create a free account and download now from here


Foreign Terms

For Grade 5 Theory, you need to try to learn all the foreign terms listed below. (This list includes all the terms from grades 1-4, which you will also need to know!) On this page you will find the terms in alphabetical order, for reference. 

If you want to start learning the terms, we recommend using our easy-to-learn groups. You can see the whole list of terms arranged into categories and easily test yourself. Follow that link to also try a fun Musical Terms Quiz to see how many terms you know!

A tempo In time
Aber But
Accelerando (Accel) Gradually getting faster
Ad libitum (Ad lib.) At choice
Adagietto Rather slow
Adagio Slow
Affettuoso Tenderly
Affrettando Hurrying
Agitato Agitated
Al, alla In the style of
Alla breve With a minim beat
Alla misura In strict time
Allargando Broadening
Allegretto Fairly quick
Allegro Fast
Allegro assai Very fast
Allegro moderato Moderately fast
Amabile Amiable, pleasant
Amore Love
Amoroso Loving
Andante At a walking pace
Andantino Slightly faster than andante
Anima Spirit
Animando Becoming more lively
Animato Animated, lively
Anime Animated, lively
Appassionato With passion
Assai Very
Assez Enough
Attacca Go immediately to next section
Ausdruck Expression
Avec With
Ben Well
Bewegt With movement, agitated
Breit Broad, expansive
Brio Vigour
Calando Getting softer, dying away
Cantabile In a singing style
Cantando Singing
Cedez Yield, relax the speed
Come As, similar to
Comodo At a comfortable speed
Con, col With
Crescendo (Cresc.) Gradually getting louder
Da capo (DC) Repeat from beginning
Dal segno (DS) Repeat from "S" sign
Deciso With determination
Decrescendo (Decresc.)    Gradually getting quieter
Delicato Delicate
Diminuendo (Dim.) Gradually getting quieter
Dolce Sweet, soft
Dolente Sad, mournful
Dolore Grief
Doloroso Sorrowful
Doppio movimento Twice as fast
Douce Sweet
E, ed And
Ein One
Einfach Simple
En dehors Prominent
En pressant hurrying
En retenant Holding back, slowing a little
Energico Energetic
Espressivo Expressive
Estinto As soft as possible
Et And
Etwas Somewhat, rather
Facile Easy
Fine The end
Forte (F) Loud
Fortepiano (FP) Loud, then immediately soft
Fortissimo (FF) Very Loud
Forza Force
Fröhlich Cheerful, joyful
Fuoco Fire
Giocoso Playful, merry
Giusto Proper, exact
Grave Very slow, solemn
Grazioso Graceful
Immer Always
Incalzando Getting quicker
Lacrimoso Sad
Langsam Slow
Largamente Broadly
Larghetto Rather slow
Largo Slow and stately
Lebhaft Lively
Legato Smoothly
Legerement Light
Leggiero Light, nimble
Lent Slow
Lento Slow
Lunga Long
Lunga pausa Long pause
Lusingando Coaxing
Ma But
Maestoso Majestic
Mais But
Marcato Emphatic, accented
Marziale In a military style
Massig At a moderate speed
Meno Less
Mesto Sad
Mezzo Half
Mezzo forte (MF) Moderately loud
Mezzo piano (MP) Moderately quiet
Misura Measure
Mit With
Moderato Moderate speed
Modere At a moderate speed
Moins Less
Molto Very much
Morendo Dying away
Mosso Movement
Nicht Not
Niente Nothing (silence)
Nobilmente Nobly
Non Not
Non Not
Ohne Without
Ossia Or, alternatively
Perdendosi Dying away
Pesante Heavy
Peu Little
Piacevole Pleasant
Piangevole Plaintive, like a lament
Pianissimo (PP) Very quiet
Piano (P) Quiet
Piu More
Plus More
Pochettino Rather little
Poco A little
Possibile Possible
Presser hurry
Presto Fast (faster than allegro)
Prima volta First time
Prima, primo First
Quasi As if, resembling
Ralentir Slow down
Rallentando (Rall.) Gradually getting slower
Retenu Held back
Rinforzando (RF, RFZ) Reinforcing
Risoluto Bold, strong
Ritardando (Rit.) Gradually getting slower
Ritenuto (Rit.) Held back
Ritmico Rhythmically
Rubato With some freedom of time
Ruhig Peaceful
Sans Without
Scherzando Playfully, joking
Schnell Fast
Seconda volta Second time
Seconda, secondo Second
Segue Go straight on without stopping
Sehr Very
Semplice Simple, plain
Sempre Always
Senza Without
Senza misura In free time
Sforzando (SF) Forced, accented
Sforzato (SFZ) Forced, accented
Simile (sim.) In the same way
Smorzando Dying away in tone and speed
Sonoro Resonant, with a rich tone
Sopra Above
Sostenuto Sustained
Sotto Below
Staccato (Stacc.) Detached
Stringendo Gradually getting faster
Subito Suddenly
Suss Sweet
Tanta So much
Tempo Speed, time
Teneramente Tenderly
Tenerezza Tenderly
Tenuto Held
Tosto Swift, Rapid
Tranquillo Calm
Traurig Sad
Tres Very
Tristamento, Triste Sorrowful
Troppo Too much
Un, Une One
Und And
Veloce Swift
Vif Lively
Vite Quick
Vivace, vivo Lively, quick
Voce Voice
Volante Flying, fast
Voll Full
Wenig Little
Wieder Again
Zart Tender, delicate
Zu To, too



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