percussion Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun the act of playing a percussion instrument
  2. noun the act of exploding a percussion cap
  3. noun the section of a band or orchestra that plays percussion instruments
    rhythm section; percussion section.
  4. noun tapping a part of the body for diagnostic purposes


Per*cus"sion noun
L. percussio: cf. F. percussion. See Percuss.
  1. The act of percussing, or striking one body against another; forcible collision, esp. such as gives a sound or report. Sir I. Newton.
  2. Hence: The effect of violent collision; vibratory shock; impression of sound on the ear.
    The thunderlike percussion of thy sounds. Shak.
  3. (Med.) The act of tapping or striking the surface of the body in order to learn the condition of the parts beneath by the sound emitted or the sensation imparted to the fingers. Percussion is said to be immediate if the blow is directly upon the body; if some interventing substance, as a pleximeter, is, used, it is called mediate.

Webster 1913