Definition of resonance in US English:



  • 1The quality in a sound of being deep, full, and reverberating.

    ‘the resonance of his voice’
    • ‘In business presentations, voice, particularly its pitch and resonance, can have a small but important impact on the way information given by a speaker is received.’
    • ‘From the first few moments, however, the performance took on the feeling of a ceremony with the deep resonance of the cello in the sanctuary and the player's eloquent artistry.’
    • ‘This creates a homogenous quality to the pieces, as does the particular resonance of the instrument.’
    • ‘The deep resonance of the opening logo in each episode always brings a smile!’
    • ‘I envy guys who are comfortable in their own voices and who speak with deep resonance.’
    • ‘However, on ‘Vlu’ an almost dainty melody twitters while that basso profondo voice adds a resonance that pours out of the speakers like thick treacle.’
    • ‘The deep resonance of his voice brings out both the wisdom and intimacy of his poems.’
    • ‘How can you get resonance in voices trained solely for the mike?’
    • ‘His own voice has matured well, developing resonance and combining the power of his younger years with the savvy he displayed in his white-soul days.’
    • ‘She said that each theatre person can find their own truth in spoken language and they can work on their voices to improve their resonance.’
    • ‘Now that is a voice. A truly great voice, with resonance, musicality and beauty.’
    • ‘It's a virtuoso performance full of muted notes, plucked resonance, bristling clusters, elliptical melodies, rolled chords and tremolos.’
    • ‘They each have their own uniquely beautiful voice, yet together they are superb, adding extra resonance to scenes which almost every member of the audience can probably relate to in some way.’
    • ‘He'd much rather surround the listener with sound than attack with it, and with Levitate he's created another song cycle of unmatched beauty and resonance.’
    • ‘Fifty-five-gallon oil drums are cut to various depths that determine pitch and resonance of high tenors to deep bass.’
    reverberation, resounding
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    1. 1.1 The ability to evoke or suggest images, memories, and emotions.
      ‘the concepts lose their emotional resonance’
      • ‘Certainly, any play critiquing class structure gains resonance during the Depression.’
      • ‘Not to be outdone, the nurses looked for a banner carrier whose image would evoke even greater resonance.’
      • ‘Of course, his films were also movies with complicated characters, a distinctive milieu, and emotional resonance.’
      • ‘It's visual inventiveness and emotional resonance are second to none.’
      • ‘Do the words " opium of the masses " carry any resonance for you?’
      • ‘The fourth crucial technique of his allegory is the use of myth to orient events, to give resonance to images, places, persons.’
      • ‘The books did not find any resonance, and not one review appeared.’
      • ‘They are completely unaware of who this monument celebrates or what its significance is; yet the image's resonance is not lost on its audience.’
      • ‘Harry's personal conflicts become the central focus, and the emotional resonance is sufficient to power the film.’
      • ‘Beyond the coolness, however, each action scene has a purpose and emotional resonance to it.’
      • ‘The story of Lucille is vapid and uninteresting in comparison, for it lacks any emotional or societal resonance.’
      • ‘Her version takes on added resonance and power when you remember that Tori is herself a victim of male violence.’
      • ‘A story, unlike a theory, invites embroidery and variation, and indeed stories gain their communicative power by resonance with more primal stories.’
      • ‘Injuries, then, have a great emotional resonance.’
      • ‘None of the other works in the gallery achieved such resonance.’
      • ‘Instead of the usual light-hearted romp, this performance found power and emotional resonance in the music.’
      • ‘Love must have the power to haunt to provide emotional resonance.’
      • ‘As always, theatre acquires an extra resonance when it deals with the real world.’
      • ‘Baseball may not quite be America's favorite sport anymore, but it still has plenty of emotional resonance.’
      • ‘Amelie is the sort of film that will have the same resonance for audiences across the world.’
  • 2Physics
    The reinforcement or prolongation of sound by reflection from a surface or by the synchronous vibration of a neighboring object.

    • ‘A special kind of sound reinforcement, called assisted resonance, is used in some halls to increase the reverberation time within certain frequency bands.’
    • ‘The researcher believes giraffes may use Helmholtz resonance, causing the air in their long windpipes to vibrate at a low pitch.’
    • ‘A bass trap is any device that reduces the strength of a low frequency ‘standing wave’ or resonance.’
    • ‘These peaks had to do with successive oscillations of the density waves in the early universe, and a phenomenon called resonance that makes some wavelengths more intense than others.’
    • ‘According to principles of Pythagoras, the river water in the down pipe changed the pitch of the sonic resonance.’
    reverberation, throbbing, throb, vibrating, pulsation, pulsing, rumbling, rumble, beating, beat, drumming, drum, thumping, thump, thrumming, thrum, pounding, pound, palpitating, palpitation
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  • 3The condition in which an electric circuit or device produces the largest possible response to an applied oscillating signal, especially when its inductive and its capacitative reactances are balanced.

    • ‘In addition, the signal overlap for each resonance line can be examined in the spatially resolved spectra.’
    • ‘On the other hand, if the electrical resonance is involved in the generation of oscillations, disabling it should eliminate the spontaneous bundle activity.’
    • ‘The piezo transformer is operated as close to resonance as possible, contributing to greater circuit efficiency.’
    • ‘The conditions under which resonance can be observed are quite specific.’
    1. 3.1Mechanics The condition in which an object or system is subjected to an oscillating force having a frequency close to its own natural frequency.
      • ‘Leaving aside the microtonal differences resulting from natural resonance I have constructed 11 modes based on the interaction of 2 harmonic series.’
      • ‘Selective resonance at these eigentone frequencies will inevitably colour the sound, especially in small rectangular rooms where the resonant frequencies are high enough to fall within the musical range.’
      • ‘He found that, at a certain speed, the resonance - or natural frequency - of the machine was the root cause of the problem.’
  • 4Astronomy
    The occurrence of a simple ratio between the periods of revolution of two bodies about a single primary.

    • ‘Second, Pluto is in a 2: 3 orbit-orbit resonance with Neptune.’
    • ‘The mechanism involves a gravitational resonance between the Moon and accretion-disk material, which can increase orbital inclinations up to approx 15°.’
    • ‘In this resonance, Venus would make, on average, four axial rotations as seen by an Earth observer between successive close approaches of the two planets.’
  • 5Chemistry
    The state attributed to certain molecules of having a structure that cannot adequately be represented by a single structural formula but is a composite of two or more structures of higher energy.

    • ‘An example of a molecule which demonstrates resonance is ozone, O 3.’
    • ‘This resonance strongly stabilizes benzene and profoundly influences its chemical properties.’
    • ‘This creates a line of p orbitals down the length of the molecule, allowing resonance stabilization of the pi bonds.’
    • ‘Because a carboxylate ion has low energy due to resonance stabilization, its formation via dissociation in aqueous solution is somewhat favorable.’
  • 6Physics
    A short-lived subatomic particle that is an excited state of a more stable particle.

    • ‘A statistical model for decay and formation of heavy hadronic resonances is formulated.’
    • ‘The ρ meson is a wide resonance (Γρ = 150 MeV) and will decay primarily inside the nucleus, making it ideal for observing medium effects.’
    • ‘The evidence for the new particle is a resonance observed when studying the invariant mass combinations of D*- anti-charmed mesons (dcbar) with protons (uud) and the anti-matter equivalent, D*+ mesons with anti-protons.’


Late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin resonantia ‘echo’, from resonare ‘resound’ (see resonant).