One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A musical instrument of the saxhorn family, especially the alto or tenor saxhorn in E flat.
- ‘After dark the Italian Hall was lighted by sconces in the shape of althorns adorned with ribbons, and by a chandelier of unusual design.’
- ‘Many althorn players in the United States are often players whose chief instrument was not originally the althorn.’
- ‘The timbre of the althorns and waldhorns is quite different.’
- ‘Heard on the fundamentally different, narrow-bored period cornets, althorn, saxhorn etc (all the Wallace Collection's early instruments are described in detail for cognoscenti) they come up fresh and lucid.’
- ‘Our compound consists of trumpets/cornets, percussion-instruments, saxophones, a few trombones, althorns, one clarinet, euphoniums/barytons and some tubas.’
Mid 19th century: from German, from alt ‘high’ (from Latin altus) + Horn ‘horn’.
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