Definition of pibroch in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpiːbrɒk/
Pronunciation: /ˈpiːbrɒx/


[mass noun]
1A form of music for the Scottish bagpipes involving elaborate variations on a theme, typically of a martial or funerary character: the Great Music, or pibroch, can be a mystery to pipers of even reasonable competence
More example sentences
  • The traditional music expert presents a programme in which he rediscovers what he maintains is the real ‘pibroch’ (Highland piping tradition).
  • He travelled to 40 different countries in search of Ceol Mor ‘the Great Music,’ the obscure, expressive, less formally rigid art of piobaireachd - also pronounced ‘pibroch.’
  • He complained that pipers had lost the strong sense of rhythm and form which characterized the true pibroch style, and he published a number of well known tunes in settings which purported to give the true timings as originally played.
1.1 [count noun] A piece of pibroch music: the mournful majesty of his father pacing the floor and playing a pibroch
More example sentences
  • I passed out of the library and as I did, I thought I heard from the other side of Arthur's Seat a lone piper playing a pibroch.
  • Somewhere in the far distance the pipes played a pibroch, a lament for the day's dead that felt like it came from the wind itself, and the drone was echoed by groans and shrieks from deep in the mist.
  • When our piper played a pibroch, the music of the waves drowned or softened down the harsh sound of the bagpipe, which discoursed most excellent music.


Early 18th century: from Scottish Gaelic piobaireachd 'art of piping', from piobair 'piper', from piob, from English pipe.

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Line breaks: pi|broch

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