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viola da gamba

[vee-oh-luh duh gahm-buh, -gam-] /viˈoʊ lə də ˈgɑm bə, -ˈgæm-/
noun, plural viola da gambas.
an old musical instrument of the viol family, held on or between the knees: superseded by the modern violoncello; bass viol.
an organ stop of eight-foot pitch giving a stringlike tone.
Origin of viola da gamba
1590-1600; < Italian: literally, viol for the leg Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for viola da gamba
Historical Examples
  • Like the viola da gamba, it has six strings and catgut frets.

  • In the middle of the air, the viola da gamba and the flutes play by themselves.

    Handel Romain Rolland
  • Do you remember the lessons that you gave me on the viola da gamba?

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • You're not going to stop here all your life playing the viola da gamba.

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • That she played the viola da gamba very well was true enough, but what sense was there in a girl like that playing an instrument?

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • The concert began with a sonata for the harpsichord and the viola da gamba, and then Evelyn sang her two songs.

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • If your destiny should be to play the viola da gamba in Dulwich, and mine to set forth again on my trip round the world.

    Evelyn Innes George Moore
  • The other bows in Fig. 26 are viola da gamba bows; the upper one I use frequently myself in certain pieces for that instrument.

  • Prtorius expresses himself regarding the viola da gamba as follows: Violas, viols, and violuntzes are of two kinds—1.

    The Violoncello and Its History

    Wilhelm Joseph von Wasielewski
  • Amongst the latter there were several bass viols, like the viola da gamba.

    The Violoncello and Its History

    Wilhelm Joseph von Wasielewski
British Dictionary definitions for viola da gamba

viola da gamba

/vɪˈəʊlə də ˈɡæmbə/
the second largest and lowest member of the viol family See viol
Word Origin
C18: from Italian, literally: viol for the leg
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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