1. A drama, either tragic or comic, of which music forms an essential part; a drama wholly or mostly
sung, consisting of recitative, arials, choruses, duets, trios, etc., with orchestral accompaniment, preludes,
and interludes, together with appropriate costumes, scenery, and action; a lyric drama.
2. The score of a musical drama, either written or in print; a play set to music.
3. The house where operas are exhibited.
||Opéra bouffe [F. opéra opera + bouffe comic, It. buffo], ||Opera buffa [It.], light, farcical, burlesque
opera. Opera box, a partially inclosed portion of the auditorium of an opera house for the use of
a small private party. ||Opéra comique [F.], comic or humorous opera. Opera flannel, a light
flannel, highly finished. Knight. Opera girl (Bot.), an East Indian plant (Mantisia saltatoria) of
the Ginger family, sometimes seen in hothouses. It has curious flowers which have some resemblance
to a ballet dancer, whence the popular name. Called also dancing girls. Opera glass, a short
telescope with concave eye lenses of low power, usually made double, that is, with a tube and set of
glasses for each eye; a lorgnette; so called because adapted for use at the opera, theater, etc.
Opera hat, a gentleman's folding hat. Opera house, specifically, a theater devoted to the performance
of operas. ||Opera seria [It.], serious or tragic opera; grand opera.
(Op"er*a*ble) a. Practicable. [Obs.]
(Op`er*am"e*ter) n. [L. opus, operis, pl. opera work + -meter.] An instrument or machine
for measuring work done, especially for ascertaining the number of rotations made by a machine or
wheel in manufacturing cloth; a counter. Ure.
(Op"er*ance Op"er*an*cy) n. The act of operating or working; operation. [R.]
(Op"er*and) n. [From neuter of L. operandus, gerundive of operari. See Operate.] (Math.)
The symbol, quantity, or thing upon which a mathematical operation is performed; called also faciend.
(Op"er*ant) a. [L. operans, p. pr. of operari. See Operate.] Operative. [R.] Shak. n.
An operative person or thing. [R.] Coleridge.
(Op"er*ate) v. i. [imp. & p. p. Operated ; p. pr. & vb. n. Operating.] [L. operatus, p. p. of
operari to work, fr. opus, operis, work, labor; akin to Skr. apas, and also to G. üben to exercise, OHG.
uoben, Icel. fa. Cf. Inure, Maneuver, Ure.]
1. To perform a work or labor; to exert power or strengh, physical or mechanical; to act.
2. To produce an appropriate physical effect; to issue in the result designed by nature; especially (Med.),
to take appropriate effect on the human system.
3. To act or produce effect on the mind; to exert moral power or influence.
The virtues of private persons operate but on a few.Atterbury.
A plain, convincing reason operates on the mind both of a learned and ignorant hearer as long as they
4. (Surg.) To perform some manual act upon a human body in a methodical manner, and usually with
instruments, with a view to restore soundness or health, as in amputation, lithotomy, etc.
5. To deal in stocks or any commodity with a view to speculative profits. [Brokers' Cant]
(Op"er*ate), v. t.