Definition of tenor adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈtenə(r)//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈtenər//
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[only before noun] (of a musical instrument) with a range of notes similar to that of a tenor voice a tenor saxophone compare alto, bass1, soprano Word Originadjective late Middle English: via Old French from medieval Latin, based on tenere ‘to hold’; so named because the tenor part was allotted (and therefore “held”) the melody.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: tenor

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