Etymology
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pizzicato (n.)

1845; in music for stringed instruments of the viol family, noting a manner of playing (and the effect produced by it) when the strings are plucked by the finger instead of sounded by the bow, from Italian pizzicato "plucked," past participle of pizzicare "to pluck (strings), pinch," from pizzare "to prick, to sting," from Old Italian pizzo "point, edge," from Vulgar Latin *pits-, probably of imitative origin. As an adjective from 1880.

updated on June 29, 2020

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