One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1An organ stop sounding a main register of flue pipes, typically of eight-foot pitch.
- ‘The pipes that produce the diapason tones of organs generally are made of alloys with tin contents varying from’
- ‘Etherington adopts an apt change in registration, giving vent to the diapasons that would have been the lynchpin of organs in Handel's own time.’
- ‘I gently lifted out the pipes: one was voiced with a low set upper lip as a diapason, and the other with a high curved upper lip as a flute.’
- ‘Weisflog rattles off the planned improvements: new choir ranks in both organs, several mixture stops, a pedal open diapason, and an en chamade or horizontal state trumpet to lend pomp and pageantry to academic convocations.’
- ‘But the organ basically has one foundational stop which you use, I wouldn't say all the time, but most of the time if you are regularly playing, and that is the diapason or the principal, they have different names.’
2A grand swelling burst of harmony.
- ‘For 45 minutes he spoke, sometimes allowing his voice to swell in a sonorous diapason, sometimes letting it sink low as he leaned forward confidentially over the desk.’
3literary The entire compass, range, or scope of something.
- ‘The entire diapason of pro-war liberal opinion-formers has indulged in this revolting ad hominem habit, ad infinitum and ad nauseam.’
- ‘Here is an author in full command of the English language; invective is not beyond him; he ranges across the full diapason of human passion.’
Late Middle English (denoting the interval of an octave): via Latin from Greek dia pasōn (khordōn) ‘through all (notes)’.
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