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A trumpet (sense 1).


From Middle English trumpette, trompette (trumpet) from Old French trompette (trumpet), diminutive of trompe (horn, trump, trumpet), from Frankish *trumpa, *trumba (trumpet). Akin to Old High German trumpa, trumba (horn, trumpet), Middle Dutch tromme (drum), Middle Low German trumme (drum), Old Norse trumba (pipe; trumpet). More at drum.



trumpet (plural trumpets)

  1. (music) A musical instrument of the brass family, generally tuned to the key of B-flat; by extension, any type of lip-vibrated aerophone, most often valveless and not chromatic.
    The royal herald sounded a trumpet to announce their arrival.
  2. In an orchestra or other musical group, a musician that plays the trumpet.
    The trumpets were assigned to stand at the rear of the orchestra pit.
  3. The cry of an elephant.
    The large bull gave a basso trumpet as he charged the hunters.
  4. (figuratively) One who praises, or propagates praise, or is the instrument of propagating it.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
    • Dryden
      That great politician was pleased to have the greatest wit of those times [] to be the trumpet of his praises.
  5. A funnel, or short flaring pipe, used as a guide or conductor, as for yarn in a knitting machine.


  • (musical instrument): cornet



Derived terms[edit]




trumpet (third-person singular simple present trumpets, present participle trumpeting, simple past and past participle trumpeted)

  1. (intransitive) To sound loudly, be amplified
    The music trumpeted from the speakers, hurting my ears.
  2. (intransitive) To play the trumpet.
    Cedric made a living trumpeting for the change of passersby in the subway.
  3. (intransitive) Of an elephant, to make its cry.
    The circus trainer cracked the whip, signaling the elephant to trumpet.
  4. (transitive) To proclaim loudly; to promote enthusiastically
    Andy trumpeted Jane's secret across the school, much to her embarrassment.
    • Francis Bacon
      They did nothing but publish and trumpet all the reproaches they could devise against the Irish.


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Related terms[edit]