Definition of commedia dell'arte in English:

commedia dell'arte

Syllabification: com·me·dia dell'ar·te
Pronunciation: /kəˌmādēə ˌdelˈärtē
 
/

noun

  • An improvised kind of popular comedy in Italian theaters in the 16th-18th centuries, based on stock characters. Actors adapted their comic dialogue and action according to a few basic plots (commonly love intrigues) and to topical issues.
    More example sentences
    • These were worn by players in the Italian theater known as commedia dell'arte, which was popular in the 16th century.
    • The heroes of this strange and gripping twenty-first-century love story resemble personages from the Italian commedia dell'arte.
    • The story involves three characters from commedia dell'arte - Pierrot, Columbine, and Brighella - and uses them to illustrate the vulnerability of innocence.

Origin

Italian, 'comedy of art'.

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