tan·​ta·​ra tan-ˈter-ə How to pronounce tantara (audio)
: the blare of a trumpet or horn

Did you know?

Tantara is a shortening of the Latin taratantara, an onomatopoetic word that in ancient times that evoked the terrible sound of the war-trumpet. When "tantara" entered English in the 16th century, the sound it evoked was a merry one. "Tantara, tantara, the trumpets sound, / Which makes our hearte with joy abound," wrote Humphrey Gifford in 1580. Today, "tantara" is sometimes used as a synonym of "fanfare," a word for a short, lively sound of trumpets that may also be onomatopoetic in origin.

Word History


Latin taratantara, of imitative origin

First Known Use

1584, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tantara was in 1584


Dictionary Entries Near tantara

Cite this Entry

“Tantara.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tantara. Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!