Definition of Tone-deaf

1. Adjective. Unable to appreciate music.

Similar to: Deaf

Definition of Tone-deaf

1. Adjective. Unable to clearly distinguish the difference in pitch between different notes. ¹

2. Adjective. (colloquial) Having little appreciation of music, whether or not as a result of (1). ¹

¹ Source:

Tone-deaf Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Tone-deaf

tonca bean
tonca beans
tone-deaf (current term)
tone arm
tone arms
tone colour
tone deafness
tone decay test
tone dialing
tone dialling
tone down
tone ending
tone language
tone mark
tone marks
tone number
tone numbers

Literary usage of Tone-deaf

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Manual of Natural Education by Winifred d'Estcourte Sackville Stoner (1916)
"No Children Naturally Tone Deaf.—A dear friend of mine who can not distinguish between the airs of Yankee Doodle and Nearer My God to Thee attributes his ..."

2. Essentials of Psychology by Colin Sherman Buell (1898)
"Such people are called tone deaf. This defect may result in the person's being ... When the tone deaf person sings, he sings the same note, varying only the ..."

3. The Septonate and the Centralization of the Tonal System: A New View of the by Julius Klauser (1890)
"The colorblind might just as well attempt to paint as the tone-deaf to study ... have aspired to paint or to become great artists, yet the tone- deaf ..."

4. Field Book of Wild Birds and Their Music: A Description of the Character and by Ferdinand Schuyler Mathews (1921)
"It is a notable fact that many people are partly tone-deaf; I have the acquaintance of several so afflicted, therefore, it is not surprising that the ..."

5. Some Questions of Phonetic Theory by Wilfrid Perrett (1919)
"A tone-deaf adult is demonstrably able, by giving attention to suitable ... A certain tone-deaf person (whose ears I'm afraid I have worried a good deal in ..."

6. The Life of Sir Herbert Stanley Oakeley by Edward Murray Oakeley (1904)
"Quakers' eyes, one pair in seventeen)1 is colour blind, at least ninety-nine hearers in a hundred are tone deaf. It is true that the essential difference in ..."

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