tam·​bou·​rine | \ ˌtam-bə-ˈrēn How to pronounce tambourine (audio) \

Definition of tambourine

: a small drum especially : a shallow one-headed drum with loose metallic disks at the sides played especially by shaking or striking with the hand

Illustration of tambourine

Illustration of tambourine

Examples of tambourine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

South Koreans are relieved that their careers no longer hinge on jangling a tambourine for their tone-deaf bosses. The Economist, "Karaoke with colleagues is no longer compulsory in South Korea," 22 Aug. 2019 Case in point: Gonzo, who plays the tambourine on his face. Bill Keveney, USA TODAY, "'AGT' goes live: The best acts headed into the final rounds of summer's top show," 12 Aug. 2019 In their minds, the judges should've sent Gonzo the tambourine man home, instead. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'AGT' Judges (Especially Simon) Are Getting Major Backlash After a "Terrible" Tuesday Night," 31 July 2019 With that being said though, the judges gave Gonzo the tambourine guru some pretty heavy criticism. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "All the 'America's Got Talent' Results Spoilers You Could Ever Want," 29 Aug. 2019 Children sang, danced, and even held some instruments themselves, including violins and tambourines. Beth Mlady, cleveland.com, "Berea children experience unique Cleveland Orchestra musical moments," 16 Aug. 2019 And when Schultz threw his tambourine over his shoulder to wade into the crowd, there wasn’t even that. Dylan Owens, The Know, "With Mission Ballroom, Denver finally has the concert venue it deserves," 8 Aug. 2019 His remix of multi-instrumentalist Dexter Story’s 2015 work merges bits of keyboard, hand clap, tambourine, analog synth and Ras’ gentle scat-singing to create a mystical new track. Los Angeles Times, "California Sounds: Three essential Ras G tracks you should know," 31 July 2019 The 2019 America's Got Talent judges are getting called out for putting through Gonzo the tambourine man and not Ansley Burns on last night's season 14 judge cuts show. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'AGT' Judges (Especially Simon) Are Getting Major Backlash After a "Terrible" Tuesday Night," 31 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'tambourine.' 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 tambourine

1579, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tambourine

Middle French tambourin, diminutive of tambour

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Statistics for tambourine

Last Updated

16 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for tambourine

The first known use of tambourine was in 1579

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More Definitions for tambourine



English Language Learners Definition of tambourine

: a small musical instrument that is held in one hand and played by shaking or hitting it with the other hand


tam·​bou·​rine | \ ˌtam-bə-ˈrēn How to pronounce tambourine (audio) \

Kids Definition of tambourine

: a small shallow drum with only one head and loose metal disks around the rim that is played by shaking or hitting with the hand

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More from Merriam-Webster on tambourine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tambourine

Spanish Central: Translation of tambourine

Nglish: Translation of tambourine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tambourine for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about tambourine

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