Definition and background:
A second but subordinate melodic line sometimes found in music which has a melody and an accompaniment. a melody designed to fit with another, more important melody. A countermelody could be omitted from a performance, but a principal melody is indispensable. less important melody that can be played along with the main melody
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Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary