Share this entry
tam-tam Line breaks: tam-tam
Pronunciation: /ˈtamtam/

Definition of tam-tam in English:


A large metal gong.
Example sentences
  • The piece, scored for four percussionists, is played by the percussion group using a big array of gongs, tam-tams, tom-toms, suspended brake drums and so on, but is neither bombastic nor boring.
  • In the orchestra, I am thinking of using a certain number of brass and also metallic percussion: tubular bells, gongs, tam-tam, etc.
  • He caps this ‘movement’ with a resonant tam-tam that may not be in the score but it definitely adds to the effect!


Mid 19th century: perhaps from Hindi ṭam-ṭam (see tom-tom).

Definition of tam-tam in:
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources