harp

noun
\ˈhärp \

Definition of harp 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a plucked stringed instrument consisting of a resonator, an arched or angled neck that may be supported by a post, and strings of graded length that are perpendicular to the soundboard

2 : something resembling a harp

harp

verb
harped; harping; harps

Definition of harp (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to play on a harp

2 : to dwell on or recur to a subject tiresomely or monotonously usually used with on

Illustration of harp

Illustration of harp

Noun

harp 1

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from harp

Noun

harpist \ ˈhär-​pist \ noun

Examples of harp in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The wives have their ridiculous fake delivery scene downstairs, including the harp-playing wife from Naomi Putnam’s fake labor scene, while the handmaids troop upstairs. Rena Gross, Billboard, "14 Significant Moments From 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 2, Episode 10 'The Last Ceremony'," 20 June 2018 Letitia Berlin, recorder, douçaine; Frances Blaker, recorder, hammered dulcimer; Shira Kammen, vielle, harp, voice; Allison Zelles Lloyd, voice, harp with special guest Temmo Korisheli, voice. Chronicle Staff Report, San Francisco Chronicle, "Classical music and dance listings," 31 May 2018 This 19th-century saung gauk, a Burmese harp, is meant to rest in the player’s lap. Alexandra Wolfe, WSJ, "High Notes: Musical Instruments Over Millennia," 23 Mar. 2018 Mejier beautifully translates their dancing contrapuntal complexity to the harp, and her playing is luminous, resonant, and graceful. Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, "Music / Post No Bills Lavinia Meijer rethinks the typically ornate sound of the harp for a minimalist repertoire," 5 June 2018 On Disc 7, the Gnostic Trio (harp, guitar, vibraphone) elevates and aerates Mr. Zorn’s cyclical compositions. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "The Playlist: Pearl Jam Kicks Up a Fury, and 9 More New Songs," 16 Mar. 2018 One of the most vivid tombs, built by a man called Mereruka, contains 32 chambers with scenes on the walls depicting his life, from hunting in the marshes to listening to his daughter play the harp. Jim Berkeley, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Egypt," 5 Oct. 2016 Harper Another surname, given to someone who made harps. Asher Fogle, Good Housekeeping, "The Real Meaning Behind 29 of the Most Popular Baby Names," 6 Jan. 2016 In a July 10 cover story with Variety, the REVOLT CEO harps on that exact sentiment. Michael Saponara, Billboard, "Diddy Takes Aim at the Entertainment Industry For Lack of Investment in Black Executives," 10 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

As a result, the benefits of meditation have, in many cases, been overblown thanks to headlines harping on awesome-sounding but unsubstantial studies. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "What Meditation Can—and Can’t—Do for Your Health," 11 Sep. 2018 In his campaign, Morrisey, 50, has harped on his efforts as attorney general to curtail the state’s opioid epidemic. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Who is Patrick Morrisey? A look at the West Virginia Senate hopeful," 21 Aug. 2018 But really, our job throughout the night is not to harp on any drama that came before us but to celebrate all the people in that room, who put in all their effort eight times a week and deserve to be there for all the right reasons. Ashley Lee, latimes.com, "For Tony Awards hosts Josh Groban and Sara Bareilles, it's showtime," 9 June 2018 Stephen Curry harped on the team's 18 turnovers — which has always been Golden State's Achilles' heel during this run the past four seasons. Tim Bontemps, chicagotribune.com, "Kevin Durant is reverting to old habits as Warriors get pushed to brink of elimination," 25 May 2018 With Mark Cuban constantly harping on bad officiating, with replay stoppages cluttering the end of games, all the focus turns to the referees. Norman Chad, San Antonio Express-News, "Chad column: NBA players should stop complaining about officiating," 15 Jan. 2018 To harp on repeatedly about the worst aspect of a sport is rather ludicrous. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Sorry soccer haters, but this World Cup is absolutely awesome," 25 June 2018 Letitia Berlin, recorder, douçaine; Frances Blaker, recorder, hammered dulcimer; Shira Kammen, vielle, harp, voice; Allison Zelles Lloyd, voice, harp with special guest Temmo Korisheli, voice. Chronicle Staff Report, San Francisco Chronicle, "Classical music and dance listings," 31 May 2018 To embrace the positives instead of harping on the negatives. Jeff Seidel, Detroit Free Press, "NCAA tournament: The fight inside Michigan basketball's Zavier Simpson," 15 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'harp.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of harp

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for harp

Noun

Middle English, from Old English hearpe; akin to Old High German harpha harp

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Statistics for harp

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for harp

The first known use of harp was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for harp

harp

noun

English Language Learners Definition of harp

: a musical instrument that has strings stretched across a large open frame and that is played with your fingers

harp

noun
\ˈhärp \

Kids Definition of harp

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a musical instrument consisting of a triangular frame set with strings that are plucked by the fingers

harp

verb
harped; harping

Kids Definition of harp (Entry 2 of 2)

: to call attention to something over and over again The teacher harped on her mistake.

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Comments on harp

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