from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. An early wind instrument with a keyboard, resembling a cross between a reed organ and an accordion, which makes its sound by the action of air being blown across metallic reeds.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A wind instrument whose sounding parts are reeds, consisting of a thin tongue of brass playing freely through a slot in a plate. It has a case, like a piano, and is played by means of a similar keybord, the bellows being worked by the foot. The melodeon is a portable variety of this instrument.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A musical instrument essentially similar to the harmonium, of which it was the precursor. It was invented in 1833 by John Green. See reed-organ.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
I looked if there was any sign of a bellows, thinking it must have been some primitive kind of reed-instrument, like what we call a seraphine or harmonium now-a-days.
He had already learned to play the "seraphine," the instrument which has been developed into the reed organ.
There is also stamped in Ormuz a seraphine of gold, which is litle and round, and is worth 24 sadines, which maketh 30 medines of Aleppo.
A portable seraphine gave forth a familiar tune, in which all joined in singing with a zest which is only realized by those whom it carries back in recollection to distant home.
Soft breezes sweep them tranquilly over the smooth bosom of the Mediterranean; Angelino sits among his heaps of toys, or listens to the seraphine, or leans his head with fondling hands upon the white goat, who is now to be his foster-parent, or in the captain's arms moves to and fro, gazing curiously at spars and rigging, or watches with delight the swelling canvass; while, under the constant stars, above the unresting sea,
Many of the beer-shops are a haunt of the young of both sexes among the factory people, 'the majority with faces unwashed and hair uncombed, dancing in their wooden clogs to the music of an organ, violin, or seraphine.'
Formerly, church-service was wont to be celebrated in this same room; and for the purpose of kindling, by means of music, any latent sparks of devotion in the minds of his sable flock, the deceased clergyman, who had resided before us at Rosevale, had imported a seraphine, which he played with skill, and which had never been opened since his death.
Hmm @seraphine, maybe we need a BOF for twitter at
'manly poppet:' to which I made answer, that I thought so too; and that she was a 'seraphine concert.'
a seraphine, and four priests sitting gaping in a row on one side of the altar "in flowered satin dresses and little cloth caps, looking exactly like the band at a wild-beast-caravan."