from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A narrow, often hourglass-shaped stringed instrument having three or four strings and a fretted fingerboard, typically held flat across the knees while sitting and played by plucking or strumming. Also called Appalachian dulcimer, mountain dulcimer.
- n. The hammered dulcimer.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A stringed instrument, with strings stretched across a sounding board, usually trapezoidal. It's played on the lap or horizontally on a table. Some have their own legs. These musical instruments are played by plucking on the strings (traditionally with a quill) or by tapping on them (in the case of the hammer dulcimers).
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. An instrument, having stretched metallic wires which are beaten with two light hammers held in the hands of the performer.
- n. An ancient musical instrument in use among the Jews. Dan. iii. 5. It is supposed to be the same with the psaltery.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A musical instrument consisting of a body shaped like a trapezium, over which are stretched a number of metallic strings, having a compass—sometimes diatonic, sometimes chromatic—of from 2 to 3 octaves.
- n. A kind of woman's bonnet.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a trapezoidal zither whose metal strings are struck with light hammers
- n. a stringed instrument used in American folk music; an elliptical body and a fretted fingerboard and three strings
Alteration (influenced by Latin dulcis, sweet) of Middle English doucemer, from Old French doulcemer, doulcemele, probably from Latin dulce melos, sweet song : dulce, neuter of dulcis, sweet + melos, song (from Greek melos).(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French doulcemelle, probably from Latin dulce melos ("sweet song"), from Ancient Greek μέλος (melos, "melody, song"). (Wiktionary)