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

  • adj. Loud and clear: a clarion call to resistance.
  • n. Music A medieval trumpet with a shrill clear tone.
  • n. Music The sound of this instrument or a sound resembling it.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A medieval brass instrument, related to the trumpet, or its sound.
  • adj. Loud and clear.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A kind of trumpet, whose note is clear and shrill.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A small high-pitched trumpet.
  • n. Hence, any sound resembling that of a clarion; any instrument which utters sounds like those of a clarion.
  • n. An organ-stop having pipes with reeds, which give a bright, piercing tone, usually an octave above the key struck.
  • n. In heraldry, a bearing common in very early English heraldry, and occasionally used on the continent, supposed to represent a musical wind-instrument.

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

  • v. blow the clarion
  • v. proclaim on, or as if on, a clarion
  • adj. loud and clear
  • n. a medieval brass instrument with a clear shrill tone


Middle English clarioun, a clarion, from Old French clarion, from Medieval Latin clāriō, clāriōn-, from Latin clārus, clear; see clear.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Middle English, from Old French, from Medieval Latin clario ("trumpet"), from Latin clarus ("clear") (Wiktionary)


Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.