Etymology
Advertisement
pat (v.)
1560s, "to hit, throw;" meaning "to tap or strike lightly" is from 1714; from pat (n.). Related: Patted; patting. The nursery rhyme phrase pat-a-cake is known from 1823. Alternative patty-cake (usually American English) is attested from 1794 (in "Mother Goose's Melody, or Sonnets for the Cradle," Worcester, Mass.).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
plagal (adj.)

denoting a mode or melody in Gregorian music in which the final is in the middle of the compass instead of at the bottom, 1590s, from Medieval Latin plagalis, from plaga "the plagal mode," probably from plagius, from Medieval Greek plagios "plagal," in classical Greek "oblique," from plagos "side" (from PIE root *plak- (1) "to be flat").

Related entries & more 
ditty (n.)

"short song or poem intended to be sung to a simple melody,"early 14c., from Old French ditie "composition, poem, treatise," from Latin dictatum "thing dictated," neuter past participle of dictare "dictate," frequentative of dicere "to say, speak" (from PIE root *deik- "to show," also "pronounce solemnly"). In Middle English used of any literary composition, including dramas, essays, letters.

Related entries & more 
aria (n.)

"melody for a single voice," 1775, from Italian aria, literally "air" (see air (n.1)).

Historically considered, the aria marks a single moment in the course of a dramatic action. The text often consists of but a few words, many times repeated (as we find in Handel's oratorios, etc.), and the musical development is the main thing. The opposite of aria is recitative (q.v.), in which the declamation of the syllables is the main thing, colored, perhaps, by means of clever orchestration. [W.S.B. Mathews and Emil Liebling, "Dictionary of Music," 1896]
Related entries & more 
rumba (n.)

type of Afro-Cuban dance, also a ballroom dance based on it, the rhythm of it, and the music suitable for it; 1914 ("La Rumba" was the name of a popular tango melody from 1913), from Cuban Spanish rumba, originally "spree, carousal," derived from Spanish rumbo "spree, party," earlier "ostentation, pomp, leadership," perhaps originally "the course of a ship," from rombo "rhombus," in reference to the compass, which is marked with a rhombus. The verb is recorded from 1932. Related: Rumbaed; rumbaing.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Mother Goose 
probably a translation of mid-17c. French contes de ma mère l'oye, which meant "fairy tales." The phrase appeared on the frontispiece of Charles Perrault's 1697 collection of eight fairy tales ("Contes du Temps Passé"), which was translated in English 1729 as "Mother Goose's Tales", and a very popular collection of traditional nursery rhymes published by John Newbery c. 1765 was called "Mother Goose's Melody." Her own biographical story is no earlier than 1806.
Related entries & more 
wood (adj.)
"violently insane" (now obsolete), from Old English wod "mad, frenzied," from Proto-Germanic *woda- (source also of Gothic woþs "possessed, mad," Old High German wuot "mad, madness," German wut "rage, fury"), from PIE *wet- (1) "to blow; inspire, spiritually arouse;" source of Latin vates "seer, poet," Old Irish faith "poet;" "with a common element of mental excitement" [Buck]. Compare Old English woþ "sound, melody, song," Old Norse oðr "poetry," and the god-name Odin.
Related entries & more 
tenor (n.)
c. 1300, "general meaning, prevailing course, purpose, drift," from Old French tenor "substance, contents, meaning, sense; tenor part in music" (13c. Modern French teneur), from Latin tenorem (nominative tenor) "a course," originally "continuance, uninterrupted course, a holding on," from tenere "to hold," from PIE root *ten- "to stretch." The musical sense of "high male voice" is attested from late 14c. in English, so-called because the sustained melody (canto fermo) was carried by the tenor's part. Meaning "singer with a tenor voice" is from late 15c. As an adjective in this sense from 1520s.
Related entries & more 
corny (adj.)

1570s, "full of corn, pertaining to corn," from corn (n.1) + -y (2). Chaucer used it of ale (late 14c.), perhaps to mean "malty." American English slang "old-fashioned, sentimental" is from 1932 (first attested in "Melody Maker"), perhaps originally "something appealing to country folk" (corn-fed in the same sense is attested from 1929). Related: Cornily; corniness.

There's an element of truth in every idea that lasts long enough to be called corny. [songwriter Irving Berlin (1888-1989), in a 1962 interview]
Related entries & more 
modulation (n.)

late 14c., modulacioun, "act of singing or making music, harmony," from Old French modulation "act of making music" (14c.) and directly from Latin modulationem (nominative modulatio) "rhythmical measure, singing and playing, melody," noun of action from past-participle stem of modulari "regulate, measure off properly, measure rhythmically; play, play upon," from modulus "small measure," diminutive of modus "measure, manner" (from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures"). Meaning "act of regulating according to measure or proportion" is from 1530s. Musical sense of "action or process of changing from one key to another" is by 1690s.

Related entries & more 

Page 3