Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A stationary set of chromatically tuned bells in a tower, usually played from a keyboard.
  • n. A composition written or arranged for these bells.
  • intransitive v. To play a carillon.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A set of bells, often in a bell tower, sometimes operated by means of a keyboard (manual or pedal), originating from the Low Countries.
  • n. A tune adapted to be played by musical bells.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A chime of bells diatonically tuned, played by clockwork or by finger keys.
  • n. A tune adapted to be played by musical bells.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A set of stationary bells tuned so as to play regularly composed melodies, and sounded by the action of the hand upon a keyboard or by machinery.
  • n. A small instrument furnished with bells, properly tuned, and with finger-keys like those of the pianoforte.
  • n. A simple air adapted to be performed on a set of bells.
  • n. The rapid ringing of several large bells at the same time, with no attempt to produce a tune or the effect of tolling.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. set of bells hung in a bell tower
  • n. playing a set of bells that are (usually) hung in a tower

Etymologies

French, alteration of Old French quarregnon, from Late Latin quaterniō, quaterniōn-, set of four; see quaternion.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • I think the thing with "carillon" is that it is a whole range of different sounds ... each coins strikes a different note as it hits the others ... a chime is surely a single note?

    At Swim, One Ambassador

  • It was a carillon, that is, a continued mass of real music, in which whole tunes, songs, and elaborate pieces of such length, mass and harmony, as only a choir of many voices, a band of music, or an orchestra of many performers could produce.

    Dutch Fairy Tales for Young Folks

  • It evolved into what is now known as the carillon - the world's heaviest musical instrument!

    Culture | guardian.co.uk

  • Come down to Hyde Park Sunday at 6pm for a carillon is a huge, ancient instrument which appears to be made out of bells of varying sizes.

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  • Apparently if bells play a recognisable tune, they are different kind of bells and it's called a carillon or something.

    London SE1 community website

  • "It's a wonderful opportunity to spend an evening together in the park, and also support this carillon, which is a really rare musical treasure," Walker said.

    The State Journal-Register Home RSS

  • The middle part of a large steeple’s tower often contains a carillon, which is a musical instrument composed of at least 23 bells, arranged in chromatic sequence, so tuned as to produce concordant harmony when many bells are sounded together.

    Archive 2005-07-01

  • Some, like Denver Botanical Gardens, have a summer concert series; Chicago's has carillon recitals.

    Evolution of a Garden

  • Try one of the suggested walking tours to get an overview of the main sites, stopping to take in one of the regular carillon concerts at St Rumbold's Cathedral.

    Enjoy an autumn city break in Flanders

  • While Art Of Noise celebrates the Midlands' cultural heritage of heavy metal, reggae, punk and bhangra, Easterby adapts the numinous aura of the bell-tower carillon to the enchanting possibilities activated by hi-tech electronic sensors set within the primal spookiness of a darkened room.

    This week's new exhibitions

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