Definition and background:
The music of the period c. 1600 - 1750 C.E., directly following the Renaissance and preceding the Classical era. This style is characterized by a lot of ornamentation, thus the name; it is also distinguishable by its use of basso continuo and application of the doctrine of the affections. The main composers of this era include Giovanni Gabrieli, Claudio Monteverdi, Antonio Vivaldi, Dominico Scarlatti, Johann Sebastian Bach, and George Frederick Handel. Relating to the period from about 1600-1750, characterized by grandeur and heavy elaboration of design in music. a term borrowed from architecture to describe a particular music style, similarly elaborate and heavily ornamented in style
A theatrical style of painting and sculpture characterization, "often florid, exuberant, and emotional" with heavy ornamentation that came to be considered grotesque. (Britannica, 634) The style, intended to evoke compelling effects of drama and grandeur, developed in Italy at the end of the 16th century and continued into the 17th Century. The subject was usually religious. The movement spread throughout Europe and employed strong sense of movement and contrast between light and dark. Caravaggio (1573-1610) is considered the first Baroque artist by many scholars because of his religious subject matter and dramatic use of light and dark (chiaroscuro). Other Baroque painters were Anthony Van Dyck (1599-1641) and Diego Velasquez (1599-1660). Sources: "The Britannica Encyclopedia of American Art"; Kimberley Reynolds, "Illustrated Dictionary of Art Terms"; Ralph Meyer, "A Dictionary of Art Terms".
For more information on the music term "Baroque" check out these other resources:
Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary