I'm having trouble finding what this notation means:

Rectangle sitting on a short line above the staff

  • 1
    It looks like an actual hat Nov 23, 2023 at 17:05
  • 1
    This is most likely a pause.
    – Lazy
    Nov 23, 2023 at 17:11
  • 1
    To clarify: do you know what a half rest is? Nov 23, 2023 at 19:52
  • 1
    @Lazy the correct term in English is "rest."
    – phoog
    Nov 24, 2023 at 9:26
  • 1
    @Lazy well I live in a French-speaking place so I am accustomed to hearing and seeing "pause" for "rest" but I suppose that others might not be.
    – phoog
    Nov 24, 2023 at 10:09

1 Answer 1


It's a 2-beat, minim rest, aka half rest. We're used to seeing it within the stave.

I imagine a minim mouse sitting on the line to help me distinguish the rest from a whole (four beat) rest which hangs down below the line.

  • And a semibreve spider hangs under the line. Do that with American half/whole naming!
    – Laurence
    Nov 24, 2023 at 11:15
  • 2
    A whole rest hangs below the line, because it is heavier. Nov 24, 2023 at 13:00
  • 1
    @piiperiReinstateMonica Except it tends to hang from the fourth line, while the half rest likes to sit on the third. Maybe the whole rest is better able to cling to the ceiling because it's stronger?
    – Divizna
    Nov 24, 2023 at 15:21
  • Maybe the whole rest is afraid of falling through a whole, so it clinges to the ceiling, while the half rest says: ”Me half no fear of them wholes!“
    – Lazy
    Nov 27, 2023 at 13:50

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