si·​tar si-ˈtär How to pronounce sitar (audio)
: an Indian lute with a long neck and a varying number of strings
si-ˈtär-ist How to pronounce sitar (audio)

Illustration of sitar

Illustration of sitar

Examples of sitar in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Somewhere in this profusion, dancers are shown executing all 108 poses of the ancient tradition Bharatanatyam, and 151 musicians are playing sitars, sarods, tablas, and an orchestra’s worth of other instruments. Justin Davidson, Curbed, 9 Nov. 2023 First, a timetable of the head-spinning array of activities on offer each day, including breath work, meditation sessions, and—a particular favorite—raga therapy, which essentially involved lying on the ground as a sitar was gently strummed, and most days led to a mid-afternoon doze. Liam Hess, Vogue, 9 Oct. 2023 Her past collaborators range from shape-shifting singer-songwriter Cautious Clay to former Encinitas sitar great Anoushka Shankar, with whom Aftab this year shared a Grammy nomination for Best Global Music Performance. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Sep. 2023 Pakistani American singer Arooj Aftab won the inaugural global music performance award, and sitar player Anoushka Shankar earned a nomination; acts like those will likely continue to be recognized in the category. Mesfin Fekadu, The Hollywood Reporter, 17 Aug. 2023 This is a showcase for the sitar, and the sitar earns it. Christopher Arnott, Hartford Courant, 7 May 2022 Despite the minor-key chorus of the original, there was a sense of hope (and sitar). Kory Grow, Rolling Stone, 7 July 2023 The monthly concert series will continue with a Feb. 16 performance of Hindustani classical music by tabla player Samir Chatterjee, sitar player Paul Livingstone and Suman Laha, who performs on the veena, an Indian stringed instrument that is in some ways similar to a sitar and a sarod. San Diego Union-Tribune, 26 Jan. 2023 Anoushka began studying the sitar under the instruction of her father at 9 years old and made her professional debut at 13. Steven Vargas, Los Angeles Times, 17 May 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sitar.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Hindi & Urdu sitār, from Persian, a three-stringed lute, from sih three + tār string, thread

First Known Use

1828, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sitar was in 1828

Dictionary Entries Near sitar

Cite this Entry

“Sitar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Apr. 2024.

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