Definition of postlude in US English:



  • 1A concluding piece of music, especially an organ piece played at the end of a religious service.

    • ‘While some composers have excelled at writing preludes, Silvestrov has become the master of the postlude.’
    • ‘Preludes, offertories, anthems, postludes - these and their like are not essential to worship.’
    • ‘This is a good choice for groups who do prelude or postlude music at church services or other functions.’
    • ‘This work consists of a collection of 7 chorales with preludes and postludes with which the organist can make his contribution to all the liturgical parts of the religious service.’
    • ‘They make an odd postlude to Bach and Brahms, however.’
    • ‘The Vocalise, which was not on Previn's recording, comes as a quiet postlude to the Second's drama.’
    appendix, codicil, postscript, afterword, tailpiece, rider, coda, supplement, accompaniment
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    1. 1.1 A written or spoken epilogue; an afterword.
      • ‘Also added is a postlude in which the authors mount a spirited defence of their position in response to the hostile reception given to the first edition.’
      • ‘Bloom informs us that he wrote the monograph as a postlude to ‘Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human’.’
      • ‘The whole is introduced by a ‘prelude’ called The Amen Stone (which means ‘May it come to pass’) and closes with a postlude about the same stone.’
      • ‘In her postlude to the book, she added, ‘Out of that struggle to find himself he created art that made an enormous contribution to theater and dance almost worldwide.’’
      supplement, addendum, postscript, codicil
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Mid 19th century: from post- ‘later, after’, on the pattern of prelude.