Definition of canzone in US English:



  • 1An Italian or Provençal song or ballad.

    • ‘Some of these traditions are metric conventions, which are constitutive for certain genres such as Italian and French canzone.’
    • ‘These three canzoni were then embedded in a second prose work of Dante's, Il Convivio, which also frames and explicates his lyric verse.’
    • ‘His great canzone, ‘Donna mi prega,’ which became the subject of learned Latin commentaries, deals with ideas commonly associated with the ‘radical Aristotelianism’ or ‘Averroism’ of his day.’
    • ‘But the postBeatrice canzoni discussed in the Convivio are not entirely repudiated in the turn back to Beatrice and sacred love represented by the Commedia, given the role that two of the three play in the poem.’
    • ‘Equally commendable is the virtuosity he displayed while experimenting with traditional Western forms like the sonnet and the villanelle, as well as more complex forms such as the canzone and terza rima.’
    song, folk song, shanty, ditty
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A type of lyric resembling a madrigal.


Late 16th century: from Italian, ‘song’, from Latin cantio(n-) ‘singing’, from canere ‘sing’.