There are many cases where non-US-native English speakers have terminology that differs from the standard US convention. A recent example is:

In this case, 'partiture' is equivalent to 'score' in US English. 'Partiture' is an Italian word, and those do have their place in talking about music (crescendo, decrescendo, rallentando, etc.), but this one is almost completely unheard of in the US, though it appears to be common in some international English-speaking schools of music teaching.

This is an English language website, clearly, but is it a US-English language website? The above-linked question would be confusing for all of our native US-based users without further research. As it would be convention to translate/revise questions and answers that are written in other languages, shall we also make sure that the terminology we use is accessible to a US-English language audience, not just an English language audience?

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    I believe it is valid music terminology. All I had to do was google it. :) Oct 29 '12 at 16:30
  • Agree in general, but leave 'partitures' as-is: it classes up the joint. :) Dec 19 '12 at 8:25

I believe the general SE policy is that any variant of English is OK and shouldn't be changed due to minor spelling or semantic issues. But if something's confusing to the point that it's a concern, I don't see any reason not to edit in some clarification or leave a comment. In the case of slang, we should probably replace the wording entirely.


Although this is an English only site, if it's in Wikipedia's list of musical terminology, I believe it's OK. However, we might want to consider change a term if it's not common English and there is a more common term that that fit's the bill. For example, I would change "tacet" to "multi-meausre rest". "Partiture" might become "multi-staff score" or something similar. There's a fine line between English and non-English musical terms. If it's in an English dictionary (such as OED), I'd say it's fine. However, if there's a better term with the same meaning, use that instead.

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    I would say 'tacet' and 'multi-measure rest' are two distinct common English terms that mean quite different things! And while I agree it's easy enough to just google it, I find it pretty annoying to have to mentally replace "partiture" with "score" as I'm reading it. If there's actually a slight difference in meaning I'd feel differently, but it seems to mean the exact same thing...
    – NReilingh
    Oct 29 '12 at 20:32
  • Perhaps you're thinking of "tacit". I rarely use the term "tacet". Oct 29 '12 at 20:41
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    Tacet is commonly used to indicate sitting out an entire movement, where a multi-measure rest is a marking used in parts that indicates a specific number of measures to rest. But clearly, that's beside the point. :-)
    – NReilingh
    Oct 29 '12 at 23:59

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