One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A recurrent theme throughout a musical or literary composition, associated with a particular person, idea, or situation.
subject, subject matter, theme, issue, matter, point, talking point, question, concern, argument, discussion, thesis, text, concept, field, area, keynoteView synonyms
- ‘The work abounds in leitmotivs, the most important of which are those relating to Holmes and Watson.’
- ‘The key leitmotiv throughout Richard Hooker's writings is the concept of order.’
- ‘As a result, his body and its ailments become the leitmotif of the novel.’
- ‘The constant struggle to make a living in the arts in New Zealand runs like a leitmotiv throughout the book.’
- ‘The book of Jonah is a leitmotif in this novel for illustrating this idea.’
Late 19th century: from German Leitmotiv, from leit- ‘leading’ (from leiten ‘to lead’) + Motiv ‘motive’.
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