Word for Wednesday: Saxophone

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For the month of May, we have chosen musical instruments as the theme for our Word for Wednesday posts. 

The word music entered English in the thirteenth century as ‘musike’ via the Old French ‘musique’ and the Latin ‘musica’ meaning ‘music or poetry’. ‘Musica’ is from the Greek ‘mousikÄ“’ which means ‘art of the muses’. 

So far in our exploration into where musical instruments get their names from, we’ve looked at the words pianoguitar, and drum. The final musical instrument in our series is the saxophone.  

A saxophone is a metal wind instrument with a reed like a clarinet that is popular in jazz and dance music. This instrument is much younger than the other ones we have featured and was developed around 1840 by Adolphe Sax. The Sax family also invented the saxhorn, saxtromba, and saxtuba

The word saxophone entered English in 1851 via French. The word comes from its inventor’s name combined with the suffix ‘phone’ meaning sound. ‘Sax’ is a variant of the surnames ‘Sachs’ or ‘Sacks’ which mean ‘Saxon’ and ‘phone’ derives from the Greek ‘phonos’. Learn about other words that are named for people here


27 May 2020
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"Spellzone fits in beautifully with our Scope and Sequence of Phonological Awareness and Spelling. It also aligns perfectly with the four areas of spelling knowledge and uses the Brain, Ears, Eyes approach to learning spelling."
Thank you!

Teacher, Australia