Diminished third

Diminished third

In music theory, a diminished third is an interval that has two half steps (semitones). Explanations and excerpts from famous works

In music theory, a diminished third is an interval that has two half steps united states of america (semitones united kingdom).

The diminished third requires that:

  • The interval must be a third interval (three note names between the first and the last).
  • The interval must have two half steps.

What does a diminished third look like?

Here is an example of a melodic diminished third (two music notes in a melody) and a harmonic diminished third (in a chord):

Diminished third

How to recognize a diminished third?

Rule of music theory: All intervals in a major scale starting with the tonic (degree I) are either major or perfect, and only unison, octave, fourth and fifth are perfect (the others are major).

Example with the interval C / E♭♭:

Let's take the to have C as the tonic:

C major scale

From the rule stated above, the interval C / E♮ is a major third, so the interval C / E♭ is a minor third, and so the interval C / E♭ is a diminished third.

Inversion of the diminished third

The inversion of the diminished third is the augmented sixth.

Here is an example of a augmented sixth:

augmented sixth

Musical examples of diminished third

No examples yet, but feel free to send me some examples!

Interval identification game

You will find this interval in my Intervals identification game:

Find all my music theory games by clicking this link music theory games
music theory games


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