Definition of trumpet in US English:



  • 1A brass musical instrument with a flared bell and a bright, penetrating tone. The modern instrument has the tubing looped to form a straight-sided coil, with three valves.

    • ‘Most of them were holding an instrument of some sort, whether it was a trumpet or trombone, snare drum or flute.’
    • ‘My mother played some piano and my father was able to play violin, some piano, saxophone, clarinet, trumpet and trombone.’
    • ‘They are also accomplished musicians too, playing saxophone, trumpet, trombone, harmonica and acoustic guitar.’
    • ‘The Bohemian works were written for the keyed trumpet's predecessor, the valve trumpet.’
    • ‘Soon afterwards, he joined the local brass band, learning first the trombone, then the trumpet and cornet.’
    • ‘They were enrolled in beginning school ensemble programs, with most of them learning the clarinet, trumpet, flute or saxophone.’
    • ‘This blended apparently effortlessly with vocals, a trumpet, flute, saxophone, guitars and drums.’
    • ‘He was a multi-instrumentalist skilled on the saxophone, the flute, the trumpet and other instruments he invented because he felt he needed a new sound.’
    • ‘Children also get to learn the saxophone, clarinet, trumpet, trombone, guitar, violin, and drums, among other things.’
    • ‘Flutes, saxophones, clarinets, trumpets and bassoons share the spotlight and take frequent solos that, like the vocals, often ramble aimlessly.’
    • ‘As he ran he heard a distant bugle of a brass trumpet.’
    • ‘Nor is it all normal trumpets: this CD boasts piccolo trumpets, bass trumpets, cornets and flugelhorns, as well as a smattering of percussion.’
    • ‘On this recording, there are nine violins, three violas, three cellos, a double bass, one flute, three oboes, one bassoon, three trumpets, a set of timpani, and a harpsichord.’
    • ‘While they were eating, a small jazz band in the corner, made up of only a trumpet, trombone, clarinet, tuba, flute, and drums, provided music.’
    • ‘Dad played the saxophone, clarinet, trumpet or cornet, and the French horn.’
    • ‘I play a number of different instruments including guitar, trumpet, flute and saxophone, but my main interest is composing.’
    • ‘The furniture had been replaced with guitars, bells, trumpets and tambourines.’
    • ‘The band has 16 members - one vocalist and 15 who play instruments including trumpets, guitars, saxophones, trombones, drums and an organ.’
    • ‘Such music is varied, but the instruments commonly used include trumpets, flutes, long brass horns, percussion frame drums, cymbals, and kettle drums.’
    • ‘The corps currently has 40 members, aged from seven to 20, who play instruments including trumpets, cornets and flutes.’
    1. 1.1 An organ reed stop with a quality resembling that of a trumpet.
      • ‘Common trumpet reed names are Posaune, Bombard, Trumpet, and Clarion.’
      • ‘If an organ has only one manual reed stop, it is often a Trumpet, and usually on the Swell.’
    2. 1.2 A sound resembling that of a trumpet, especially the loud cry of an elephant.
      • ‘As we headed back, we suddenly heard the trumpet of an elephant that was extremely close.’
      • ‘It is a noise half-way between a lion's roar and the trumpet of an irritated elephant.’
      • ‘There was no sound except the crackle of the fire, a hyena cry and the occasional trumpet of an elephant.’
      • ‘Disney World's Animal Kingdom team has sorted elephant calls into trumpets, snorts, croaks, revs, chuffs, noisy rumbles, loud rumbles, and rumbles.’
      • ‘The loud trumpet sounds from the Elephant large as he knocks down a tree in a single charge.’
    3. 1.3 Something shaped like a trumpet, especially the tubular corona of a daffodil flower.
      • ‘Everywhere I went, there were daffodils - a million yellow trumpets saluting the arrival of the brand new season, smiling up at the clear blue sky and the bright cool sunshine above them.’
      • ‘It produces large trumpet, ivory white flowers which open a lovely pale primrose yellow, fading gradually to pure white.’
      • ‘The Angel's trumpet flower produces a narcotic scent used by South American shamans to induce visionary dreams.’
      • ‘If you want something a little different, try Digitalis Parviflora with its rust coloured flowers on upright stems, or Digitalis Ferringinea with its small trumpets of coppery-yellow flower.’
      • ‘For a full century, King Alfred has set the standard for yellow trumpet daffodils.’
      • ‘In no time at all, as we descended into damper riverside places, there were daffodils trumpets nearly fully formed and fit for a photo.’
      • ‘So far, I have never seen any hummingbirds there, although I am told that they find trumpet flowers irresistible.’
      • ‘It's a member of the daffodil family, but looks much more delicate than the big yellow trumpet daffodils you see in people's yards in the spring.’
      • ‘Close up, though, it looked like the trumpets of daffodils, which made them the most spring-like thing I saw all day.’
      • ‘Hybrids include ‘Tete-a-Tete’ up to 20 cm high with long lasting deep yellow flowers, ‘Jack Snipe’ and ‘February Silver’ both with white petals and yellow trumpets and ‘Beryl’ with primrose petals and orange trumpet.’
  • 2trumpetsA North American pitcher plant.

    Genus Sarracenia, family Sarraceniaceae: several species, in particular yellow trumpets (S. alata)

    • ‘Trumpets are found in bogs and in wet pine barrens.’
    • ‘The yellow trumpets should be grown in a bright place, with direct sunlight.’
    • ‘The yellow trumpets should be preferably located in a place where it can have at least a few hours a day of direct solar light.’


  • 1no object Play a trumpet.

    ‘figures of two trumpeting angels’
    • ‘They were trumpeting like crazy and inside this huge old concrete building, it was deafening.’
    • ‘London's trumpeting busker played the downtown streets and community for many years before giving it up this year.’
    • ‘The avenues of carved deities, courtyards and temples are seething with trumpeting musicians and drummers, with processions escorting deities.’
    1. 1.1 Make a loud, penetrating sound resembling that of a trumpet.
      ‘wild elephants trumpeting in the bush’
      • ‘The air at Pinnawala rings with bellows and trumpeting, and the cries of ‘mahouts,’ wiry men in sarongs and flip flops who care for and instruct the elephants.’
      • ‘Through the center is a pipe that allows the elephant to make the loud trumpeting noise; it can also hold 4 litres of water.’
      • ‘It's a safari postcard moment: A family of elephants rush together, rumbling, trumpeting, and screaming, their chorused voices deafening in the wilderness.’
      • ‘A quarter of an hour thus passed; then suddenly one of the elephants trumpeted, and a tremendous crashing in the reeds ensued.’
      • ‘In general, vocalizations are varied and include: trumpeting, whistles, twitters, honks, barks, grunts, quacks, croaks and growls.’
      • ‘Animal noises trumpeted, and the figures around her exploded into motion.’
      • ‘Besides trumpeting, they also communicate with other sounds.’
      • ‘The child heard a loud trumpeting and jumped in fright, spinning around to see what it was while clutching the creature tightly, just as it was grasping him.’
      • ‘And then, suddenly, cheery music started trumpeting out of the loudspeakers and over a hundred of the students who had left the hall, re-entered it dressed in matching shirts, laughing and dancing to the music.’
      • ‘The elephant climbed up the 1676 metre Doi Suthep, or Suthep Mountain, but when it neared the summit it trumpeted and died.’
      • ‘Five times a jackal barks in the cold season, and the elephants trumpet and donkeys bay many times more.’
      • ‘So, along with chemical signals and higher range trumpeting and shrieks, elephants have an extensive range of communication.’
      • ‘The streets erupt in a saturnalia of lawlessness, to which the director adds an inspired touch: an escaped elephant from Barnum's circus trumpeting down the rubble-strewn streets.’
      • ‘We were walking along the path to our tents when a loud trumpeting stopped us in our tracks.’
      • ‘The loud trumpeting is resulting in the elephants fleeing in panic.’
      • ‘But we saw lots of keweel animals, and the elephants decided to put on a real show, trumpeting and running around their compound.’
      • ‘‘The elephants got really scared, and the matriarch made these very powerful warning calls, and then the herd took off screaming and trumpeting,’ she recalls.’
      • ‘Later, the chorus was taken up by elephants trumpeting as they came down to drink.’
      • ‘To playback sounds of galloping, roaring and trumpeting, the horses, lions and jumbos enthralled the parents who had a tough time to spot their tots in the masked group.’
      • ‘The animal screamed in terror, and began running wildly, trumpeting and yelling.’
      shout, bellow, roar, yell, cry out, call out
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  • 2with object Proclaim widely or loudly.

    ‘the press trumpeted another defeat for the government’
    • ‘Headlines trumpeting federal and state fiscal problems are commonplace across the nation.’
    • ‘The significance of ice hockey to Canadian culture is widely trumpeted within the popular and even academic realms.’
    • ‘The new breed of paper focused on sensational stories about city life and trumpeted the value of a popular press as a bulwark of democracy.’
    • ‘Ironically, some of the very arguments by sociologists trumpeting that decline therefore encourage it.’
    • ‘It's a position that security professionals have been trumpeting for some time.’
    • ‘These results were widely trumpeted in the media as the long awaited ‘vindication’ of Atkins and his diet.’
    • ‘A month ago, his Edinburgh branch was issuing a press release trumpeting the fact that 46 of those made redundant there had found retraining as gas central heating fitters.’
    • ‘That is something else the Government trumpeted.’
    • ‘Each study is trumpeted by the press as the definitive study on the subject, only to have that view completely turned around a month later.’
    • ‘Some politicians trumpet these results very loudly as some sort of achievement.’
    • ‘If a modern celebrity were to support something of this nature it would be trumpeted constantly in the press.’
    • ‘Announced in February, the deal was trumpeted as creating Scotland's biggest law firm - at least in number of partners.’
    • ‘It hasn't worked very well, so now more traditional public health methods are coming back into use and being trumpeted in the press as major innovations.’
    • ‘Yet the feat she trumpets most was, in June, gaining her peerage.’
    • ‘These kinds of serious decisions are rarely trumpeted in the public press, since the element of surprise is often critical to their successful implementation.’
    • ‘Frankly, this sounds like the kind of nonsense frequently trumpeted about period pains or conditions such as ME by people who have never experienced them.’
    • ‘Last December the party trumpeted that one sixth of the Norwegian population were immigrants and called for new immigration controls.’
    • ‘How about trumpeting what you think makes your product good in a positive way?’
    • ‘Although these funds are tiny, their awful performance is widely trumpeted in the financial press.’
    • ‘The reason that she is not doing so is she does not like good figures; she wants to trumpet old and bad figures that actually do not relate to the reality, at all.’
    proclaim, announce, declare, broadcast, promulgate, noise abroad, shout from the rooftops, blazon
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  • blow one's (own) trumpet

    • Talk openly and boastfully about one's achievements.

      ‘he refused to blow his own trumpet and blushingly declined to speak’
      • ‘‘To blow our trumpet, because we are really confident about this, we believe we are the only company that has working IP telephony end-to-end,’ he said.’
      • ‘He would have been excused had he chosen to blow his trumpet a little, but that is not his style.’
      • ‘I'm not trying to blow my trumpet but it felt like the right thing to do…’
      • ‘Similarly, even today there are some insignificant boisterous Christian groups who blow their trumpet and proselytise in an aggressive way.’
      • ‘But in the lead-up to the election she was happy to blow her trumpet over the achievements of her first term.’
      • ‘Others blow their trumpet, but it's all pretty shallow.’
      • ‘A spokeswoman for the association added: ‘We just want to blow our trumpet a little, as we are getting things done, which proves that a joint voice really can make a difference.’’
      • ‘It's perhaps not widely known because we don't always blow our trumpet.’
      • ‘He seems to already be blowing his trumpet like he did the first time round.’
      • ‘However, the company's new media division is clearly one area where Lawrence could quite easily blow his trumpet.’
      boast, brag, sing one's own praises, show off, swank, congratulate oneself
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Middle English: from Old French trompette, diminutive of trompe (see trump). The verb dates from the mid 16th century.