ta·​bla ˈtä-blə How to pronounce tabla (audio)
: a pair of small different-sized hand drums used especially in music of India

Illustration of tabla

Illustration of tabla

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Thirteen Silkroad artists will perform a full evening of new work, including three commissions by tabla master Sandeep Das, harpist Maeve Gilchrist and composer, flutist and taiko drummer Kaoru Watanabe. Michael Andor Brodeur, Washington Post, 16 July 2022 Azita Ghanizada, who portrays Amir’s wife, Soraya, and Salar Nader, who plays the tabla onstage throughout the show, are both Afghan. New York Times, 1 July 2022 Kamala’s fandom adds just enough context to connect her with the Avenger timeline, even as the series marches to the beat of its own tabla. Lorraine Alitelevision Critic, Los Angeles Times, 8 June 2022 Live musical accompaniment at Writers will be performed by tabla percussionist Avirodh Sharma. Myrna Petlicki,, 19 Nov. 2021 Wedding guests traditionally perform the attan, a celebratory dance that follows the rhythmic beats of the tabla drum and allows the traditional dress to open up as the dancer twirls. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, 5 Oct. 2021 His mother, Gagan Kishori, was a member of Nepal’s royal family and sometimes accompanied her husband and sons as a vocalist and tabla player. New York Times, 29 Apr. 2021 Like the masters of another hand drum, the tabla of India, Cándido dazzled his audiences. John Edward Hasse, WSJ, 20 Apr. 2021 The Indian tabla virtuoso and ambassador-at-large for world music returns in this virtual concert presented by the Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA. Los Angeles Times, 25 Mar. 2021 See More

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

Word History


Hindi & Urdu tablā, from Arabic ṭabla

First Known Use

1865, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tabla was in 1865

Dictionary Entries Near tabla

Cite this Entry

“Tabla.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

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