Part of speech: noun
Origin: Middle English, mid 14th century
(Music) An independent treble melody usually sung or played above a basic melody.
A discourse on a theme or subject.
Examples of Descant in a sentence
"The conductor finally found a soprano to sing the descant."
"He was well-known for publishing a descant on success in business."
This word developed in Middle English, but originally came from the Old French word “deschant” by way of the medieval Latin word “discantus” (part-song, refrain).
Did you Know?
Many popular songs sample a basic melody from another well-established song. The singers make the musical composition their own by performing a descant incorporating different lyrics or a slightly different style. For example, MC Hammer’s ‘90’s hit “Can’t Touch This” samples from Rick James’ hit “Super Freak,” which came out a full decade earlier.