noun, plural scher·zos, scher·zi [skert-see] /ˈskɛrt si/. Music.

  1. a movement or passage of light or playful character, especially as the second or third movement of a sonata or a symphony.

noun plural -zos or -zi (-tsiː)

  1. a brisk lively movement, developed from the minuet, with a contrastive middle section (a trio)See minuet (def. 2)

n.1852, from Italian scherzo, literally “sport, joke,” from scherzare “to jest or joke,” from a Germanic source (cf. Middle High German scherzen “to jump merrily, enjoy oneself,” German scherz “sport”), from PIE *(s)ker- (2) “leap, jump about.” The lively second or third movement in a multi-movement work. Scherzando is the Italian gerund of scherzare.

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