• WordNet 3.6
    • n ditty a short simple song (or the words of a poem intended to be sung)
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Ditty A saying or utterance; especially, one that is short and frequently repeated; a theme. "O, too high ditty for my simple rhyme."
    • Ditty A song; a lay; a little poem intended to be sung. "Religious, martial, or civil ditties .""And to the warbling lute soft ditties sing."
    • v. i Ditty To sing; to warble a little tune. "Beasts fain would sing; birds ditty to their notes."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n ditty A song, or poem intended to be sung, usually short and simple in form, and set to a simple melody; any short simple song. Originally applied to any short poetical composition (lyric or ballad) intended to be sung, the word came to be restricted chiefly to songs of simple rustic character, being often used of the songs of birds.
    • n ditty The words of a song, as opposed to the tune or music.
    • n ditty A refrain; a saying often repeated.
    • n ditty Clamor; cry; noise.
    • ditty To sing a ditty; warble a tune.
    • ditty To sing.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Ditty dit′i a song: a little poem to be sung.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. dite, OF. ditié, fr. L. dictatum, p. p. neut. of dictare, to say often, dictate, compose. See Dictate (v. t.)
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. ditie—L. dictātum, neut. of dictātus, perf. part. of dictāre, to dictate.


In literature:

He was swaying from side to side, occasionally waving his arms in the air and howling out a tuneless ditty in a strident cracked voice.
"The Rider of Waroona" by Firth Scott
In 1608 appeared Weelkes' last work, "Airs or Fantastic Spirits for three voices," a collection of lively and humorous ditties.
"Lyrics from the Song-Books of the Elizabethan Age" by Various
Now, is not this rude ditty, made very likely by some clumsy, big-headed Galloway herd, full of the real stuff of love?
"Spare Hours" by John Brown
Songs were sung and ditties were played on the guitar; presently the Salterello sounded, and the merry dance began.
"Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen" by Hans Christian Andersen
It happened to be a love ditty.
"Brand Blotters" by William MacLeod Raine
Talking of songs, I shall just give you the interesting ditty with which this excellent extravaganza concludes.
"Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 58, Number 358, August 1845" by Various
We left the hall while its roof echoed the jingling tail-piece of another popular ditty, which tickled Beatrice's fancy hugely.
"The Message" by Alec John Dawson
It was a pretty little ditty, or rather a musical rattle on one note, resembling the song of the indigo bird, his near relative.
"A Bird-Lover in the West" by Olive Thorne Miller
It's a ripping little ditty.
"The Rhodesian" by Gertrude Page
The ditty and dirge of strife, All are daughters of duty and call to the golden life!
"Oklahoma Sunshine" by Freeman E. (Freeman Edwin) Miller

In poetry:

The ladye liked her gallant guest,—
For he kenned the themes that pleased her best;
And his tongue in silken measures skilled,
With goodly ditties her memory filled.
"Sir Raymond And The False Palmer" by Thomas Cooper
O CHOOSE thou the maid with the gentle blue eye,
That speaketh so softly, and looketh so shy;
Who weepeth for pity,
To hear a love ditty,
And marketh the end with a sigh.
"The Old Man's Song" by Thomas Cooper
What wouldst thou in these mountains seek,
O stranger from the city?
Is it perhaps some foolish freak
Of thine, to put the words I speak
Into a plaintive ditty?
"Mad River, In The White Mountains" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Aw know some fowk will call it crime,
To put sich stooaries into ryhme,
But yet, contentedly aw chime
Mi simple ditty:
An if it's all a waste o' time,
The moor's the pity.
"A Strange Stooary" by John Hartley
The Citizen will take his share
(In every sense) as bull and bear;
Nor need this oral ditty
Invoke the philologic pen
To show you that a Citizen
Means Something in the City.
"Songs Of Education: IV. Citizenship" by Gilbert Keith Chesterton
My doubt subsides—'tis no Italian song,
Nor senseless ditty, cheers the vernal tree:
Ah! who that hears Dione's tuneful tongue,
Shall doubt that music may with sense agree?
"Elegy VI. To a Lady, On the Language of Birds" by William Shenstone

In news:

Now the 62-year-old troubadour is swinging with nutty ditties for 18- to 25-year-olds to promote ESPN's college basketball schedule.
Unmusical pro-Obama ditty is seriously laughable.
A Favorite Passover Song (Scholastic, February), Miriam Latimer illustrates everyone's favorite Passover ditty.
Director Stephan Elliott ( The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert ) pumps up the melodrama - essentially a wry take on English pomposity and moral hypocrisy - with jaunty pop ditties and larky events.
I emerged from the salon whistling—that's how good I felt—but it wasn't long before my playful little ditty was drowned out by a much more declarative beat.
Roto- Rooter 's Ditty Turns 50 We'll bet it's playing in your head right now.
Sergio Leone made westerns like Wagner made ditties.
Ditty's Wrap Wagon is slinging saucy wraps.
Ditty's has more to do with lunch than music.
The LA band offers a diverse range of tracks including this ditty.
So, evidently, do the grapes in the wine inspired by that popular ditty.
Serving the Hardware, Equipment Rental & Appliance Needs in Manheim, Lititz, Mt Joy & Lancaster, PA. By JOHN DITTY.
He'll play a little ditty on his guitar, sometimes he plays it good, and sometimes he plays it not so good.
Reporter Margo Varadi gets the ultimate gift of experience: a day in the studio with a professional musician and engineers, who work their magic to turn her little ditty into a fully realized, polished song.
Observers line up Thursday behind Sacramento County elections officials, from left, Registrar Jill LaVine, Diane Jones and Heather Ditty as they verify ballot signatures.

In science:

Ditty for technical assistance with the spectrometer and sample choice and David Cory for providing the 3 qubit sample.
Randomized benchmarking of single and multi-qubit control in liquid-state NMR quantum information processing