Definition of libretto in English:

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Pronunciation: /lɪˈbrɛtəʊ/

noun (plural libretti /lɪˈbrɛti/ or librettos)

The text of an opera or other long vocal work.
Example sentences
  • Whether in opera libretti from Mozart to Verdi or in the wind and percussion sections of the modern orchestra, Western music has gathered elements of the Islamic world as if to strip them of their differences.
  • Mozart's operas to librettos by Da Ponte examine attempts to constrain the irrationality of desire within the artificial boundaries of class and society.
  • In making his libretto from the biblical text, he has boldly put that figure at the centre of his scheme.



Pronunciation: /lɪˈbrɛtɪst/
Example sentences
  • Nevertheless, there is widespread enthusiasm to see the musical because of its intriguing plot and melodious songs, composed by the composer Richard Rodgers and the librettist Oscar Hammerstein III.
  • But like journeyman opera composers, journeyman librettists do not seem to exist.
  • Problems occur, though, when composers work with a librettist who is a dramatist at heart.


Mid 18th century: from Italian, diminutive of libro 'book', from Latin liber.

Words that rhyme with libretto

allegretto, amaretto, amoretto, Canaletto, cornetto, falsetto, ghetto, larghetto, Loreto, Orvieto, ristretto, Soweto, stiletto, Tintoretto, vaporetto, zucchetto

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: li|bretto

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