Definition of panpipes in US English:


plural noun

  • A musical instrument made from a row of short pipes of varying length fixed together and played by blowing across the top.

    • ‘Local bands from around the lake, Peruvian included, played three foot long pan pipes and hammered huge drums, current political borders mean little to their common Indian heritage.’
    • ‘There was a South American band busking, the type with the pan pipes, flutes and drums.’
    • ‘New Agers of either sex will have collections full of warbling pan pipes, waterfalls and bird calls.’
    • ‘The haunting sound of the large pan pipes, the melodious sound of the charango and the moving atmosphere created by the violin bring this diverse repertoire beautifully together.’
    • ‘But then all these mandolins come in, and weird warbly flutes and recorders that I guess are trying to emulate South American pan pipes.’


Originally associated with the Greek rural god Pan.



/ˈpæn ˌpaɪps//ˈpan ˌpīps/