Part of speech: verb
Origin: Latin, 19th century
Chant or intone.
Examples of Cantillate in a sentence
"Micah practiced for months to learn how to cantillate in Hebrew during his bar mitzvah."
"While my father cooked supper, he amused us by cantillating a narration of every step of the recipe."
“Cantillate” is based on the Latin “cantillō,” meaning “to hum” or “to chirp.”
Did you Know?
To “cantillate” describes a hybrid musical recitation or chanting, specifically the kind heard in Jewish synagogues. During synagogue services, readings are not simply read aloud — they are cantillated. The text includes specific marks to instruct those cantillating how and when to sing words and syllables as musical notes. The purpose of cantillation is to ritualize religious readings, rather than to bring the assembled worshippers together in song, as with Christian hymn singing. Different Jewish traditions cantillate in different styles and rely on different melodies.