[ uh m-beer-uh ]
/ əmˈbɪər ə /


a musical instrument of Africa usually made out of a gourd that serves as a resonating box, to which vibrating metal or wooden strips are attached for plucking.

Nearby words

Origin of mbira

Borrowed into English from Shona around 1905–10
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for mbira


/ (əmˈbiːrə) /


an African musical instrument consisting of tuned metal strips attached to a resonating box, which are plucked with the thumbsAlso called: thumb piano

Word Origin for mbira

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