One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
- ‘Ralph Irizarry, recognized worldwide as an excellent percussionist, first fell in love with the timbal at an early age when his father coincidentally brought home a set received as payment for a debt.’
- ‘The percussion group is usually made up of timbals, drums, plates and bass drums and cymbals.’
- ‘The timbals beat time dully, and the exhausted guests, overcome by drunkenness, nausea and vertigo, became silent.’
Late 17th century: from French timbale, alteration (influenced by cymbale ‘cymbal’) of obsolete tamballe, from Spanish atabal, from Arabic aṭ-ṭabl ‘the drum’.
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