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 In a swift movement, Steve grabbed a tambourine that was nearby and began playing it. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, "See Steve Harvey Go Absolutely Crazy Over a 'Family Feud' Contestant’s "Hysterical" Answer," 13 Nov. 2020 In one audition video for a Prego pasta sauce ad, the mom was singing a song the company had requested, and the young daughter was supposed to be shaking the box of pasta like a tambourine. Alexandra Bruell, WSJ, "How to Make an Ad During Covid: Bribe Your Family Members to Appear," 15 Oct. 2020 The percussionists striking their drums and tambourine wore masks, but few spectators followed their lead. David Biller, Star Tribune, "Brazil strains at quarantine as virus cases pass 5 million," 8 Oct. 2020 And his tambourine collaborator, Ringo Starr, also released a statement to Billboard along with this video. Dan Rys, Billboard, "Check Out Toots & the Maytals’ Animated Video for 'Three Little Birds' With Ziggy Marley & Ringo Starr," 29 Sep. 2020 Percussion is prominent in this movement, as well, with pounding tom-toms and a rattling tambourine. Tim Diovanni, Dallas News, "If you think harps are ‘soft’ instruments, the Dallas Symphony’s Emily Levin begs to differ," 22 Sep. 2020 The steady hum of heavy machinery accompanied the song, along with a tambourine and drumbeat. Rafael Carranza, The Arizona Republic, "Interfaith groups use prayer vigils in weeklong protest of border wall construction," 17 Sep. 2020 Their cousin Dream, 3½, can be seen playing the tambourine. Georgia Slater, PEOPLE.com, "Stormi Webster, True Thompson, Chicago West & Dream Kardashian Are the Cutest Family Band," 12 Sep. 2020 Starting in the late 1970s, Francis and his camera seemed to be present every time a grand marshal blew a whistle, an Indian shook a tambourine or a trumpeter and trombonist blew their horns. Katy Reckdahl, NOLA.com, "Sylvester Francis, keeper of New Orleans Black culture at Backstreet Cultural Museum, dead at 73," 1 Sep. 2020

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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Time Traveler for tambourine

Time Traveler

The first known use of tambourine was in 1579

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Statistics for tambourine

Last Updated

20 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Tambourine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tambourine. Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.

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How to pronounce tambourine (audio)

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

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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