Religion Past and Present

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(189 words)

[German Version]

The term is derived from the Italian “aria,” “air,” usually designating an independent composition for a single voice, but sometimes applied to a vocal duet, trio, etc. An aria is normally accompanied by one or more instruments. The earliest use of the term appeared at the end of the 14th century and indicated a style or manner of singing or playing. In the 17th century the aria was frequently a movement within a larger work, such as an opera, oratorio or cantata, but the term was also used to define an independent lyrical composition. In this regard, by the…

Cite this page
Leaver, Robin A., “Aria”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 22 November 2019 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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