Definition and background:
Each separate voice or line of music in a composition. (pars) a section of a musical work, roughly equivalent to the modern term "movement" but typically shorter. Sources may label each section in turn: prima pars, secunda pars, tertia pars, etc. a part may indicate the line or music intended for a particular performer. Earlier choral music, for example, was written in separate part-books, one for each part, as is the modern practice with orchestral parts, rather than in the full vocal score now usual. The art of part-writing or, in American, voice-leading, is the art of writing simultaneous parts according to the established rules of harmony. A part-song is a vocal work in which different voices are used, as distinct from a song in which all sing the same melody
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Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary