kettledrum

[ket-l-druhm]
noun
a drum consisting of a hollow hemisphere of brass, copper, or fiberglass over which is stretched a skin, the tension of which can be modified by hand screws or foot pedals to vary the pitch.
Compare timpani.


Origin:
1595–1605; kettle + drum1

kettledrummer, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To kettledrum
Collins
World English Dictionary
kettledrum (ˈkɛtəlˌdrʌm)
 
n
a percussion instrument of definite pitch, consisting of a hollow bowl-like hemisphere covered with a skin or membrane, supported on a tripod or stand. The pitch may be adjusted by means of screws or pedals, which alter the tension of the skin
 
'kettledrummer
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

kettledrum definition


A drum consisting of a skin stretched over a large shell in the shape of a half-sphere. The pitch of the kettledrum can be changed by manipulating screws at the edge of the skin or pedals at the bottom of the drum. Kettledrums are usually used in classical music in sets of two or more and are known by their Italian name, timpani.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

kettledrum

percussion instrument in which a membrane is stretched over a hemispheric or similar-shaped shell and held taut, usually by a hoop with rope lacings, adjusting screws, or various mechanical devices; in some varieties the lacings may pierce the skin directly or the membrane may be tied on with a thong. When struck by sticks or, less commonly, by the hands, the membrane produces a sound of identifiable pitch. The form of the sound wave is not completely known, nor are the acoustic roles of the shell's shape and the volume of air it encloses.

Learn more about kettledrum with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Kettledrum players in orchestras, by the way, are among the highest-paid of the musicians.
Related Words
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;