Horn


Horn
/hawrn/, n.

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(as used in expressions)
Horn Cape

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▪ musical instrument group
French  Cor,  German  Horn,  

      in music, any of several wind instruments sounded by vibration of the player's tensed lips against a mouthpiece and primarily derived from animal horns blown at the truncated narrow end or, as among many tropical peoples, at a hole in the side. Metal construction, at first imitating natural shapes, dates as far back as the Danish Bronze Age lurs, cast in the shape of mammoth tusks, and the Roman buccina and semicircular cornu. Instruments of horn were known in ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Israel (the shofar), Greece, and throughout South and West Africa and continue to be played by shepherds in Scandinavia, the Balkans, parts of Spain, and The Sudan.

      Medieval European ivory horns, imported from Byzantium in the 10th century, were associated with royalty; these ivory (sometimes bone) horns, often richly carved, were called oliphants. The oxhorns of medieval huntsmen and watchmen sounded but one or two notes of the natural harmonic series—i.e., the notes produced on a horn or trumpet without finger holes or valves, caused by the air column vibrating in fractional segments (as for the fundamental note C: c–g–c′–e′–g′–b♭′ [approximate pitch]–c″–d″–e″, etc.). From these instruments later modern metal horns were developed. This process included refining the bore profile (which remains mainly conical except where impractical, as through the valve mechanism) and the bell form, and the prolongation of the bore to lower the fundamental pitch so as to bring higher notes of a tube's natural series within the upper sound-wave frequency limit of a player's lip vibration, thereby extending the instrument's melodic possibilities. Horns retaining the curved shape but with lengthened tube include the 18th-century bugle horn. An English straight-built group, derived from early 19th-century hunting horns, includes the brass post horn (employing harmonics 2–5, written c′–g′–c″–e″ but sounding a sixth higher); the copper coach horn; and the 20th-century English hunting horn, a reduced version with one note only.

      Accommodation of increased length by making one or more coils in the tube was well known in the 16th century, both in small once-coiled horns that led to continental hunting and post horns (whence the cornet) and in close-coiled helical horns with 5 or more feet (about 1 1/2 metres) of tubing. The large circular French hunting horn, the trompe (or cor) de chasse, appeared in about 1650; the modern orchestral, or French, horn (French horn) derives from it. Still played in modern France and Belgium by huntsmen, brass bands, and horn-playing clubs, it varies in diameter and number of coils but is often about 15 inches (38 centimetres) across, coiled three times, with 15 feet (4 1/2 metres) of tubing. It is held on the player's arm with one hand alone; the harmonics most used are numbers 4 to 12 (written in C but sounding in D a seventh lower), though numbers 2 and 3 are used as bass notes when the horns are played in harmony. See also French horn; mellophone; saxhorn.

      in zoology, either of the pair of hard processes that grow from the upper portion of the head of many hoofed mammals. The term is also loosely applied to antlers and to similar structures present on certain lizards, birds, dinosaurs, and insects. True horns—simple unbranched structures that are never shed—are found in cattle, sheep, goats, and antelopes. They consist of a core of bone surrounded by a layer of horn (keratin) that is in turn covered by keratinized epidermis.

      The antlers of deer are not horns. Shed yearly, they are composed entirely of bone, though they bear a velvety epidermal covering during the growth period. They become increasingly branched with age. The “horn” of a rhinoceros is composed of fused, heavily keratinized hairlike epidermis. Horns serve as weapons of defense against predators and of offense in battles between males for breeding access to females.

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Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Horn — (h[^o]rn), n. [AS. horn; akin to D. horen, hoorn, G., Icel., Sw., & Dan. horn, Goth. ha[ u]rn, W., Gael., & Ir. corn, L. cornu, Gr. ke ras, and perh. also to E. cheer, cranium, cerebral; cf. Skr. [,c]iras head. Cf. {Carat}, {Corn} on the foot,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Horn — may refer to: * Horn (anatomy), the pointed projection of the skin of various animals, as an organ or its material * Horn (surname)In music and sound * Horn (instrument), sometimes called a French horn, a brass musical instrument constructed of… …   Wikipedia

  • horn — HORN, hornuri, s.n. 1. Parte a coşului de fum la o casă, constituită din canalul îngropat în zidărie (şi din porţiunea ieşită în afară prin acoperiş); p. ext. întregul coş de fum al unei case. 2. Partea de deasupra vetrei ţărăneşti prin care… …   Dicționar Român

  • horn — [hôrn] n. [ME < OE, akin to Ger < IE base * k̑er , upper part of the body, head > L cornu, Gr keras] 1. a) a hard, hollow, bony or keratinous, permanent projection that grows on the head of various hoofed animals, esp. bovid ruminants b) …   English World dictionary

  • Horn — Sn std. (8. Jh.), mhd. horn, ahd. horn, as. horn Stammwort. Aus g. * hurna n. Horn , auch in gt. haurn, anord. horn, ae. horn m., afr. horn. Außergermanisch entspricht am genauesten (als u Stamm) l. cornū Horn, Spitze (al. cornum), kelt. kárnon… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • HORN (R.) — HORN REBECCA (1944 ) Née en 1944 à Michelstadt Hambourg, l’artiste d’origine allemande Rebecca Horn a réalisé ses premiers travaux en polyuréthanne, ce qui provoque chez elle une grave infection pulmonaire. Pendant près d’un an, elle sera… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Horn — Horn: Das gemeingerm. Wort mhd., ahd. horn, got. haúrn, engl. horn, schwed. horn ist, wie z. B. auch das verwandte lat. cornu »Horn«, eine Bildung zu der unter ↑ Hirn dargestellten idg. Wurzel *k̑er‹ə› , die ursprünglich das Horn bzw. Geweih auf… …   Das Herkunftswörterbuch

  • horn|y — «HR nee», adjective, horn|i|er, horn|i|est. 1. made of horn or a substance like it: »the horny shell of a lobster. 2. hard like a horn; calloused …   Useful english dictionary

  • Horn — wird, wie auch die Hornspäne, auf Stickstoffdünger verarbeitet, und zwar durch Rösten oder Dämpfen. Beim Rösten wird das Horn in eisernen Gefäßen unter kräftigem Rühren stark erhitzt, wobei jedes Anbrennen vermieden werden muß, da dasselbe große… …   Lexikon der gesamten Technik

  • Horn [2] — Horn (ital. Corno, franz. Cor, engl. Horn), das bekannte, durch Weichheit des Tones vor allen andern ausgezeichnete Blechblasinstrument, entweder als Naturinstrument (Naturhorn, Waldhorn, Corno di caccia, Cor de chasse, French horn) oder (in… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Hörn — Hörn, die paarige, aus Hornsubstanz bestehende Scheide der (knöchernen) Stirnbeinzapfen der Cavicornia (horntragenden Wiederkäuer). Im weiteren Sinne als Hornmaterial rechnet man hierzu noch die Hufe der Unpaarzeher, die Klauen der Paarzeher und… …   Lexikon der gesamten Technik


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