Etymology
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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.

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Definitions of modulation

modulation (n.)
a musical passage moving from one key to another;
Synonyms: transition
modulation (n.)
(electronics) the transmission of a signal by using it to vary a carrier wave; changing the carrier's amplitude or frequency or phase;
modulation (n.)
rise and fall of the voice pitch;
Synonyms: intonation / pitch contour
modulation (n.)
a manner of speaking in which the loudness or pitch or tone of the voice is modified;
Synonyms: inflection
modulation (n.)
the act of modifying or adjusting according to due measure and proportion (as with regard to artistic effect);
From wordnet.princeton.edu