Word of the Day : January 19, 2015


noun tin-tuh-nab-yuh-LAY-shun


1 : the ringing or sounding of bells

2 : a jingling or tinkling sound as if of bells

Did You Know?

If the sound of tintinnabulation rings a bell, that may be because it traces to a Latin interpretation of the sound a ringing bell makes. Our English word derives from tintinnabulum, the Latin word for "bell." That Latin word, in turn, comes from the verb tintinnare, which means "to ring, clang, or jingle." Like the English terms "ting" and "tinkle," tintinnare originated with a vocal imitation of the sound associated with it-that is, it is onomatopoeic. Edgar Allan Poe celebrates the sonic overtones of tintinnabulation in his poem "The Bells," which includes lines about "the tintinnabulation that so musically wells / From the bells, bells, bells, bells, / Bells, bells, bells-/ From the jingling and the tinkling of the bells."


The tintinnabulation that could be heard throughout the village was from the church on the common announcing morning services.

"The song opens with the far-away electric tintinnabulation of an ice cream truck." - Colette McIntyre, Styleite, September 4, 2014

Test Your Vocabulary

What is the "-ology" word beginning with "c" for the art of bell ringing? The answer is …


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