|an obsolete woodwind instrument of the clarinet family|
|[C19: probably from German Bassetthorn, from Italian bassetto, diminutive of |
clarinet pitched a fourth lower than the ordinary B clarinet, probably invented in about 1770 by A. and M. Mayrhofer of Passau, Bavaria. The name derives from its basset ("small bass") pitch and its original curved-horn shape (later supplanted by an angular form). Its bore is narrower than that of the E alto clarinet, and it has a downward extension of compass to the low F of the bass voice (written as C). The boxwood instrument is usually built to order, in straight form with upturned bell
Learn more about basset horn with a free trial on Britannica.com.