One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A keyboard instrument in which the notes are produced by air driven through metal reeds by foot-operated bellows.
- ‘His music, instead of advancing, regressed; the songs became strangely lethargic; they featured a pumping harmonium but very little harmony.’
- ‘Many of the pieces contain that strange instrument, the harmonium - so unfashionable now, but an item in many well-to-do 19 th-century homes.’
- ‘Ms Joy Dhammapala plays piano and harmonium, keyboard music in the western and Sri Lankan traditions.’
- ‘In a good way, the harmonium sounds like a French accordion managing to sound bitter, sweet and wry at the same time.’
- ‘They include the drums, guitar, bass, keyboards, as well as many of the less traditional instruments such as block flute, harmonium and flugelhorn.’
Mid 19th century: from French, from Latin harmonia (see harmony) or Greek harmonios ‘harmonious’.
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