American English

Definition of keynote noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[usually singular] the central idea of a book, a speech, etc. Choice is the keynote of the new education policy. a keynote address/speech/speaker (= a very important one, introducing a meeting or its subject)
  2. 2(music) the note on which the key is based
noun For the first time, a woman will be the keynoter at the convention this year.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: keynote