A pastorale is a piece of music that makes the listener think of simple, old-fashioned days or of life in the country.

Some pastorales have a rural subject, while others use familiar musical themes to evoke this feeling. A true pastorale is a simple opera that takes place in the countryside or on a farm. Other musical pastorales recall earlier forms of music and tend to be very slow, with droning bass notes. Baroque pastorales include parts of Handel's "Messiah" and a piece by Bach called "Pastorale." The word comes from pastoral, originally "pertaining to shepherds," from the Latin pastoralis, "of herdsmen."

Definitions of pastorale
  1. noun
    a musical composition that evokes rural life
    synonyms: idyl, idyll, pastoral
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    type of:
    composition, musical composition, opus, piece, piece of music
    a musical work that has been created
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