Monotone is a droning, unchanging tone. Nothing can put you to sleep quite as effectively as a teacher talking in a monotone.

The Greek word for "one tone" is monotonia, which is the root for both monotone and the closely-related word monotonous, which means "dull and tedious." A continuous sound, especially someone's voice, that doesn't rise and fall in pitch, is a monotone. When someone speaks in a monotone, his voice is flat and boring — plus listeners don't know how the speaker is feeling when everything sounds the same.

Definitions of monotone

n an unchanging intonation

drone, droning
Type of:
intonation, modulation, pitch contour
rise and fall of the voice pitch

n a single tone repeated with different words or different rhythms (especially in rendering liturgical texts)

Type of:
musical note, note, tone
a notation representing the pitch and duration of a musical sound

adj sounded or spoken in a tone unvarying in pitch

flat, monotonic, monotonous
characterized by lack of variation in pitch, tone, or volume

adj of a sequence or function; consistently increasing and never decreasing or consistently decreasing and never increasing in value

decreasing monotonic
consistently decreasing
increasing monotonic
consistently increasing
not monotonic

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