One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A group of eight people or things.
- ‘Gaurav is an active member in the comedy octet, The Other Guys.’
- ‘A joint initiative with BBC Talent, the octet flew to the jungles of Borneo to undertake a project to save the life of endangered orang-utans in the area.’
- ‘You can also try entering x.x.x.1, where the first three x's are the octets of your current IP address.’
- ‘The Robinsons' octet of ancient urban cats were all too scared to do anything about the rats and slept all day in the cosy comfort of the Aga corner.’
- ‘But the next day and the day after that came and went, and after that it was uncertain whether the observatory octet had finished chiming beneath the liquid dome.’
- ‘In addition, a quartet or octet of Orpheus members could appear at business conferences every so often to spread the gospel.’
- ‘The first couple octets are the manufacturer, the middle are the device, and the final are like serial numbers.’
- ‘The data unit is then divided into segments 1 to m of a fixed-length, 45 octets.’
- ‘I could only hope the squabbling octet did not end up at the same resort.’
- 1.1 A group of eight musicians.
group, band, orchestra, comboView synonyms
- ‘The enterprising young Mr Sheriff has won Arts Council funding for the octet.’
- ‘Murray's last release for this label, a tribute to Coltrane played by an octet, was on many critics' top - 10 lists.’
- ‘Mind Tricks, an octet of male dancers, consistently managed a successful balance between solo and group performance.’
- ‘The octet will go on to perform the Dvorak anniversary concert at Castle Howard on Tuesday.’
- ‘The string octet that accompanied him then had provided a safety net of sorts.’
- ‘If I'd have known she was part of the screeching octet, I would have cleaned up a bit better.’
- ‘Love Of Light, the octet's second album, is an occasionally beautiful mess.’
- ‘As Above, So Below finds Julian in a calmer mood than the usual galloping momentum of his octet line-up.’
- ‘He also leads an octet and the South City Six Dixieland Jazz Band.’
- ‘Since 1993, when the octet formed as a side project, few bands have been doing the alternative thing, as influenced by Faith No More and Mr. Bungle.’
- ‘Tonight, Wakefield Jazz presents Sax Appeal, a long-established octet which features five saxophones, led by Derek Nash.’
- ‘Long at the vanguard of twenty-something folk angst, Scottish octet Belle and Sebastian have been keeping it quiet for the last year.’
- ‘There is something wonderfully cussed about this Liverpool octet's omission of their finest song from their first album.’
- ‘Jamil's octet tour last year and his CD Daydreams received enthusiastic reviews.’
- ‘In the 1970s, there was even a double bass octet specialising in new music.’
- ‘John of Gaunt entered five groups in this year's regional festival including its wind band, low brass ensemble and trombone octet.’
- ‘Jamil Sheriff is the pianist with Joel's band and he will be taking his own octet to Leeds College of Music on Wednesday.’
- 1.2 A musical composition for eight voices or instruments.
- ‘The final work on the disc is Dos Danzas Latinas, an eloquent wind octet in two movements - Habanera and Samba.’
- ‘In spite of his modest output, Louis Ferdinand is regarded as the first to compose for the piano septet and octet mediums.’
- ‘Arriaga was second fiddle in a string quartet at nine years of age, and two years later wrote an octet.’
- ‘Burney recorded that his instrumental works - symphonies, concertos, octets, quartets, and trios - were as popular as his vocal music.’
- ‘In my continuing education I learned that Mendelssohn orchestrated the scherzo of his octet.’
- 1.3 The first eight lines of a sonnet.
- ‘In the first huitain (an octet that rhymes ababbcbc) de Pisan declares her personal voice as the narrator.’
- ‘Here is the octet as it is called, the first eight lines of the sonnet.’
- 1.4Chemistry A stable group of eight electrons occupying a single shell in an atom.
- ‘The octet rule is used when drawing Lewis dot structures.’
- ‘The noble gas atoms have a complete octet of electrons in the outermost shell.’
- ‘An atom will bond with another in order to satisfy the octet rule.’
- ‘The octet rule is followed in so many compounds it is a useful guide.’
- ‘Individual atoms are unstable unless they have an octet of electrons in their highest energy level.’
Mid 19th century: from Italian ottetto or German Oktett, on the pattern of duet and quartet.
Top tips for CV writingRead more
In this article we explore how to impress employers with a spot-on CV.