drone

drone1
dronish, adj.
/drohn/, n.
1. the male of the honeybee and other bees, stingless and making no honey. See illus. under bee.
2. a remote control mechanism, as a radio-controlled airplane or boat.
3. a person who lives on the labor of others; parasitic loafer.
4. a drudge.
[bef. 1000; 1945-50 for def. 2; ME drone, drane, OE dran, dron; akin to OHG treno, G Drohne]
drone2
droner, n.droningly, adv.
/drohn/, v., droned, droning, n.
v.i.
1. to make a dull, continued, low, monotonous sound; hum; buzz.
2. to speak in a monotonous tone.
3. to proceed in a dull, monotonous manner (usually fol. by on): The meeting droned on for hours.
v.t.
4. to say in a dull, monotonous tone.
n.
5. Music.
a. a continuous low tone produced by the bass pipes or bass strings of musical instruments.
b. the pipes (esp. of the bagpipe) or strings producing this tone.
c. a bagpipe equipped with such pipes.
6. a monotonous low tone; humming or buzzing sound.
7. a person who speaks in a monotonous tone.
[1490-1500; see DRONE1 and cf. ME droun to roar, Icel drynja to bellow, Goth drunjus noise]

* * *

music

      in music, a sustained tone, usually rather low in pitch, providing a sonorous foundation for a melody or melodies sounding at a higher pitch level. The term also describes an instrumental string or pipe sustaining such a tone—e.g., the drone strings of a hurdy-gurdy or the three drone pipes of some bagpipes. A drone may be continuous or intermittent, and an interval, usually the fifth, may replace the single-pitch drone.

      French sacred music as early as the 12th- and 13th-century organa (organum) of the Notre-Dame school favoured the drone, called the bourdon (“buzzing”), which would be sustained for a long time while the organal voice or voices moved above it.

      Drones occur widely in both vocal and instrumental folk music, particularly that of European cultures. Various instruments have drones built into them, contributing to the characteristic sound of the instrument—for example, the launeddas, a Sardinian triple clarinet; the Appalachian dulcimer; the five-string banjo; and the vielle, the fiddle of medieval troubadours. European and American folk fiddlers often bowed open strings to drone beneath the melody played on a neighbouring string. In the art music of India, the drone played on the tamboura sounds the two predominant notes of the raga (the melodic pattern developed by the soloist), producing the framework in which the raga is heard.

      A French bagpipe called the musette was popular in the 18th century; its drone pipes inspired the keyboard compositions, also called musettes, of the composers François Couperin (Couperin, François) (1722; for example, in Les vergers fleuris) and Jean-Philippe Rameau (Rameau, Jean-Philippe) (1724; in Pièces de clavecin). The Polish-French composer Frédéric Chopin (Chopin, Frédéric) included similar drones in several of his mazurkas to suggest the dudy, a bagpipe used in Polish folk music.

Mark DeVoto
 

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Drône — Drone Pour les articles homonymes, voir Drone (homonymie). Lanceur de drone …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Drone — may refer to: Contents 1 Nature 2 Chemicals 3 Vehicles 4 …   Wikipedia

  • Drone — Drone, n. [OE. drane a dronebee, AS. dr[=a]n; akin to OS. dr[=a]n, OHG. treno, G. drohne, Dan. drone, cf. Gr. ? a kind of wasp, dial. Gr. ? drone. Prob. named fr. the droning sound. See {Drone}, v. i.] 1. (Zo[ o]l.) The male of bees, esp. of the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Drone — (dr[=o]n), v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Droned}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Droning}.] [Cf. (for sense 1) D. dreunen, G. dr[ o]hnen, Icel. drynja to roar, drynr a roaring, Sw. dr[ o]na to bellow, drone, Dan. dr[ o]ne, Goth. drunjus sound, Gr. ? dirge, ? to cry… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • drone — [ dron ] n. m. • 1954; mot angl., proprt « faux bourdon » ♦ Milit. Petit avion de reconnaissance, sans pilote, télécommandé ou programmé. ● drone nom masculin (anglais drone) Petit avion télécommandé utilisé pour des tâches diverses (missions de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • drone — drone; la·drone; quin·hy·drone; nor·eth·in·drone; …   English syllables

  • Drone — bezeichnet eine Klangart, siehe Bordun ein davon abgeleiteter Musikstil, siehe Drone Doom eine Metal Band, siehe Drone (Band) Siehe auch: Drohne 28px Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wort bezeichneter …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • drone — [n1] person who is lazy idler, leech, loafer, lounger, parasite, slug, sluggard, sponger*; concept 412 Ant. overachiever, workaholic drone [n2] continuous noise buzz, hum, murmur, purr, sound, vibration, whirr; concept 595 Ant. quiet, silence… …   New thesaurus

  • drone — (n.) O.E. dran, dræn male honeybee, from P.Gmc. *dran (Cf. M.Du. drane; O.H.G. treno; Ger. Drohne, which is from M.L.G. drone), probably imitative; given a figurative sense of idler, lazy worker (male bees make no honey) 1520s. Meaning pilotless… …   Etymology dictionary

  • drone — s. m. 1.  [Militar] Pequeno avião não tripulado, telecomandado ou programado, geralmente usado em missões de reconhecimento. 2.  [Por extensão] Qualquer veículo controlado remota ou automaticamente.   ‣ Etimologia: inglês drone, zângão …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • drone — drone1 [drōn] n. [ME < OE dran, akin to OS dran, MLowG drone < IE * dhren < base * dher , to buzz, hum > DOR(BEETLE)] 1. a male bee or ant which serves only in a reproductive capacity and does no work 2. an idle person who lives by… …   English World dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.