pho·​no·​graph | \ ˈfō-nə-ˌgraf How to pronounce phonograph (audio) \

Definition of phonograph

: an instrument for reproducing sounds by means of the vibration of a stylus or needle following a spiral groove on a revolving disc or cylinder

Examples of phonograph in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Since the invention of the phonograph, in the eighteen-seventies, recordings—fixed, static, immutable—have gradually supplanted live performance as the way most listeners engage with music. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, 5 July 2022 Voyager 1 and 2 took with them golden phonograph records with images and sounds meant to reflect human culture. Zoe Sottile, CNN, 7 May 2022 That was life up until Thomas Edison revolutionized music consumption for the first time in history with the invention of the phonograph, a 10-inch, 78 RPM cylinder disc that could only contain about three minutes of music per side. Ryan Larry, Rolling Stone, 7 Feb. 2022 When the two men brought the Koss Model 390 phonograph to a Wisconsin hi-fi show soon after, the headphones were a hit; the larger unit, not so much. New York Times, 2 Feb. 2022 Dating back to Thomas Edison’s invention of the phonograph, the etched discs of polyvinyl chloride plastic became ubiquitous in the early 20th century. Scott Nover, Quartz, 11 Jan. 2022 From the phonograph to LP's, 8track, cassettes, CDs, MP3, streaming services, and now NFTs. Yola Robert, Forbes, 28 Jan. 2022 Happenstance events in his daily life—visits to séances, an encounter with an X-ray machine, the arrival of a phonograph—are seamlessly folded into his sanatorium epic. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 17 Jan. 2022 The piano company closed a few years later, and the sprawling factory complex was split up and used by other manufacturers in subsequent years, including a pasta factory and revived Steger furniture and phonograph companies. Paul Eisenberg,, 9 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of phonograph

1877, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for phonograph

phono- + -graph

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Time Traveler for phonograph

Time Traveler

The first known use of phonograph was in 1877

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Last Updated

30 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Phonograph.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for phonograph


pho·​no·​graph | \ ˈfō-nə-ˌgraf How to pronounce phonograph (audio) \

Kids Definition of phonograph

: an instrument that reproduces sounds recorded on a grooved disk

More from Merriam-Webster on phonograph

Nglish: Translation of phonograph for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about phonograph


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