Definition of helicon in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈhɛlɪk(ə)n/


A large spiral bass tuba played encircling the player’s head and resting on the shoulder.
Example sentences
  • Many free black and slave musicians who fought in the Civil War became adept at using piston-valve instruments of conical bore, including tubas, helicons, and saxophones.
  • It was from the helicon that Conn in the USA devised the sousaphone for the American bandmaster John Philip Sousa.
  • Keeping the faith with the Balkan brass-band traditions, he leads his boys through romps of full-bodied funkiness, cemented by blasts on the tuba-like helicon.


Late 19th century: from Latin, associated with helix.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: heli|con

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