A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Morendo

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1712136A Dictionary of Music and Musicians — MorendoJ. A. Fuller-Maitland


MORENDO, 'dying,' is used to indicate the gradual 'decrescendo' at the end of a cadence. Its meaning is well given by Shakspeare in the words, 'That strain again! it had a dying fall.' It is used by Beethoven in the Trio, op. 1, no. 3, at the end of the fourth variation in the slow movement, and in the Quartet, op. 74, also at the end of the slow movement. As a rule, it is only used for the end of the movement or in a cadence, but in the Quartet, op. 18, no. 7, slow movement, and in the 9th Symphony, slow movement, it is not confined to the end, but occurs in imperfect cadences, to give the effect of a full close. It thus differs from smorzando, as the latter can be used at any time in the movement. Chopin generally used smorzando. Both these words are almost exclusively used in slow movements.