Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A pear-shaped, two-stringed or three-stringed medieval instrument, played with a bow.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A musical instrument, the earliest known form of the viol class.
  • noun An old woman: so called in contempt. Compare ribibe, 2.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Mus.) An instrument formerly used which somewhat resembled the violin, having three strings, and being played with a bow.
  • noun obsolete A contemptuous term applied to an old woman.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun music An early three-stringed instrument, somewhat like a simple violin.

Etymologies

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

[French, from Old French, alteration (influenced by bec, beak, from its shape) of rebebe, from Old Provençal rebeb, from Arabic rabāb, from rabba, to be master, control; see rbb in Semitic roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle French rebec, alteration of rubebe.

Examples

Comments

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  • "...ancient instruments (the ramsinga, the oliphant, the Roman bugle, the lute, the rebec, the aeolian harp, Solomon's harp)..." p 108

    November 24, 2007