A"ri*a (#), n. [It., fr. L. aer. See Air.] Mus.
An air or song; a melody; a tune.
⇒ The Italian term is now mostly used for the more elaborate accompanied melodies sung by a single voice, in operas, oratorios, cantatas, anthems, etc., and not so much for simple airs or tunes.
© Webster 1913.