Word of the Day – Monday, October 15th



Word of the Day


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French word for sea
Common clues: Mal de ___; French sea; Saint-Tropez sea; Simone's sea; Nice view?
; Debussy's “La ___”
Crossword puzzle frequency: 5 times a year
Frequency in English language: 44858 / 86800
Nine Inch Nails – La Mer

The term sea refers to certain large bodies of water, but there is inconsistency as to its precise definition and application. Most commonly, a sea may refer to a large expanse of saline water connected with an ocean, but it is also used sometimes of a large saline lake that lacks a natural outlet, e.g. the Aral Sea. Colloquially, the term is used as a synonym for ocean. Additionally, large lakes, such as the Great Lakes, are occasionally referred to as inland seas.

Claude Monet, "Pyramides de Port-Coton, mer sauvage"

La mer, trois esquisses symphoniques pour orchestre (French for The sea, three symphonic sketches for orchestra), or simply La Mer (i.e. The Sea), is an orchestral composition (L 109) by the French impressionist composer Claude Debussy. It was started in 1903 in France and completed in 1905 on the English Channel coast in Eastbourne. The premiere was given by the Lamoureux Orchestra under the direction of Camille Chevillard on 15 October 1905 in Paris. The piece was initially not well received - partly because of inadequate rehearsal and partly because of Parisian outrage over Debussy's having recently left his first wife for the singer Emma Bardac. But it soon became one of Debussy's most admired and frequently performed orchestral works, and has become more so in the ensuing century.

Today, La Mer is widely regarded as one of the greatest orchestral works of the twentieth century. It is a masterpiece of suggestion and subtlety in its rich depiction of the ocean, which combines unusual orchestration with daring impressionistic harmonies. Several authors have claimed that La Mer sounds like nothing before it. The work has proven very influential.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia articles “Sea” and "La Mer".