Definitions

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

  • n. A cello.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A large stringed instrument of the violin family, but smaller than the double bass.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A stringed instrument of music; a bass viol of four strings, or a bass violin with long, large strings, giving sounds an octave lower than the viola, or tenor or alto violin.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The modern form of the medieval viola da gamba.
  • n. In organ-building, a pedal stop of eight-feet tone, having metal pipes of narrow scale and a very string-like quality.

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

  • n. a large stringed instrument; seated player holds it upright while playing

Etymologies

Italian, diminutive of violone, violone; see violone.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • My violoncello was the inspiration for the Man Ray derivation on my back.

    Quote out of context | clusterflock

  • People have been playing the instrument, formally known as the violoncello, since the mid-16th century.

    Reflector - Latest Headlines from The Daily Reflector

  • a kind of violoncello, the "tschibyzga," a long reed flute; wind instruments, tom-toms, tambourines, united with the deep voices of the singers, formed a strange harmony.

    Michael Strogoff Or, The Courier of the Czar

  • Torelli's op. 4 for violin and violoncello contributed to the repertory of unaccompanied duos not unusual at the period.

    Archive 2009-04-01

  • The string quartet, for two violins, viola and violoncello, was one of the most widely-cultivated genres of chamber music during the Classical period, with the Viennese masters Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven all contributing substantially to the literature.

    August 2009

  • Younger artists include Han-Na Chang on violoncello, who will perform works by Elgar and Mahler.

    Top Acts Rock Istanbul's Summer

  • Visitors can listen to pianist André Previn, violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and violoncello player Lynne Harrell perform together in a 1,600-year-old church, or sit where the sultans strolled, in the courtyard of Topkapi Palace, and hear a guitarist play Tchaikovsky, Schubert and other composers.

    Top Acts Rock Istanbul's Summer

  • It was equally uncertain whether the principal female singer would be sufficiently recovered from the influenza to make her appearance; Mr. Harleigh, the MASANIELLO of the night, was hoarse, and rather unwell, in consequence of the great quantity of lemon and sugar – candy he had eaten to improve his voice; and two flutes and a violoncello had pleaded severe colds.

    Sketches by Boz

  • The distant groaning of the violoncello ceased; footsteps were heard on the stairs; and Mr. Timson presented himself, and shook hands with Parsons with the utmost cordiality.

    Sketches by Boz

  • The overture, in fact, was not unlike a race between the different instruments; the piano came in first by several bars, and the violoncello next, quite distancing the poor flute; for the deaf gentleman

    Sketches by Boz

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