1. Acoustics, Phonetics: the characteristic quality of a sound, independent of pitch and loudness, from which its source or manner of production can be inferred. Timbre depends on the relative strengths of the components of different frequencies, which are determined by resonance.
2. Music: the characteristic quality of sound produced by a particular instrument or voice; tone colour.
Etymology: from Middle English tymbre < French sound (orig. of “bell)”, Middle French “bell”, timbrel, “drum,” < Mediaeval Greek tímbanon, variant of Greek týmpanon, “drum”.
There are sins or (let us call them as the world calls them) evil memories which are hidden away by man in the darkest places of the heart but they abide there and wait. He may suffer their memory to grow dim, let them be as though they had not been and all but persuade himself that they were not or at least were otherwise. Yet a chance word will call them forth suddenly and they will rise up to confront him in the most various circumstances, a vision or a dream, or while timbrel and harp soothe his senses or amid the cool silver tranquility of the evening or at the feast at midnight when he is now filled with wine. Not to insult over him will the vision come as over one that lies under her wrath, not for vengeance to cut off from the living but shrouded in the piteous vesture of the past, silent, remote, reproachful.
Frollo’s confession scene from the 1939 movie ‘The hunchback of Notre Dame’ starting Maureen O'hara as Esmeralda and Sir Cedric Hardwicke as Frollo. Esmeralda: What I have done to you?Why are you tormenting me ? Frollo: What have you done to me? You woke up in me what I believed was sleeping forever. I wanted so much to win the peace of the heart, to have serenity. And I met you, I looked at you,and since then,I lost all control over myself. And your image,now, pursues me. In the book I read,I see your face again and again. In the sound of the wind,I hear the echo of your voice, the sound of your timbrel. I try to govern my heart in the sleepless nights. And arrive to nothing but only confusion. Esmeralda:Let me,no, they’re waiting for me to dance. Frollo: I don’t want them to see you dance Esmeralda: You hurt me,my lord ! Frollo: It was unintentional. Let us go,come quickly. I won’t tolerate anymore that all these men see you dance again. I would like to have you for me only,do you understand ? If you don’t want to be mine, I…it will be death…. yours.