Definition of dulcitone in English:



  • A musical keyboard instrument in which a series of steel tuning forks are struck by hammers. It was invented in the late 19th century and was superseded by the celesta.

    • ‘But the ‘dry’ drums, keyboards, and the use of unusual instruments like vibes, dulcitone and marimba spoke of a ‘contemporary-sounding’ album.’
    • ‘It is home to the Richard Burnett Collection of Historical Keyboard Instruments which includes more than a hundred instruments (clavichords, harpsichords, pianoharpa, cylinder music box, keyboard crystalphone, digitorium, dulcitone, organs, and pianos), many in full playing condition.’
    • ‘Musical instruments like the piano, harpsichord, clavichord, organ, electric piano, electronic piano, digital piano, synthesizer, celesta, dulcitone, accordion, melodica, glasschord and carillon fall under the family of musical keyboards.’
    • ‘This was a wonderful way to spent a few hours on a Saturday afternoon as it is a small collection of antique and vintage musical instruments, specifically mouth organs, concertinas, accordions and keyboard instruments ranging from dulcitones to pianolas, harpsichords to organs.’
    • ‘In those days these would be boys who were really raw village lads, - ‘They listened to the chimes of the clock with eye-sparkling delight, and the sound of the dulcitone was a joy to their music-loving souls.’’
    • ‘One of the lots I didn't buy but rather liked was a dulcitone.’
    • ‘Thanks for all the replies - I now have two dulcitones - one good one and one for spares, and have also provided my brother-in-law with one.’
    • ‘It has also been used in musical instruments - e.g., the dulcitone, or typophone, a set of graduated tuning forks struck by felt hammers by means of a keyboard mechanism.’


Late 19th century coined by T. Machell, the instrument's inventor, from Latin dulcis ‘sweet’ + tonus ‘tone’.