a woodwind instrument in the form of a cylindrical tube with a single reed attached to its mouthpiece.

1790–1800; < French clarinette, equivalent to Old French clarin clarion + -ette -ette

clarinetist, clarinettist, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
clarinet (ˌklærɪˈnɛt)
1.  Obsolete name: clarionet a keyed woodwind instrument with a cylindrical bore and a single reed. It is a transposing instrument, most commonly pitched in A or B flat
2.  an orchestral musician who plays the clarinet
[C18: from French clarinette, probably from Italian clarinetto, from clarino trumpet]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1796, from Fr. clarinette, dim. of clarine "little bell," from fem. of adj. clarin, from clair, cler (see clear). The instrument said to have been invented c.1700 by J.C. Denner of Nuremberg, Germany. Alternative form clarionet is attested from 1784.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

clarinet definition

A woodwind instrument, usually made of black wood or plastic, and played with a single reed. The clarinet has extensive use in Dixieland, jazz, and military music, as well as in classical music.

Note: The most famous American clarinetist was Benny Goodman.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences for clarinettist
A person who plays the clarinet is called a clarinetist or clarinettist.
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