1. A succession of sounds or words uttered in a single tone of voice.
a. A single tone repeated with different words or time values, especially in a rendering of a liturgical text.
b. A chant in a single tone.
3. Sameness or dull repetition in sound, style, manner, or color.
1. Characterized by or uttered in a monotone: a monotone recitation of names.
2. Of or having a single color: a cat with a monotone coat.
3. also mon·o·ton·ic (mŏn′ə-tŏnĭk) Mathematics Designating sequences, the successive members of which either consistently increase or decrease but do not oscillate in relative value. Each member of a monotone increasing sequence is greater than or equal to the preceding member; each member of a monotone decreasing sequence is less than or equal to the preceding member.
[From Greek monotonos, monotonous; see MONOTONOUS.]
mon′o·tonic (-tŏnĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.