1. a woodwind instrument having a slender conical, tubular body and a double-reed mouthpiece.
  2. (in an organ) a reed stop with a sound like that of an oboe.
  3. (a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter O.)

noun (sometimes initial capital letter)

  1. a navigation system utilizing two radar ground stations that measure the distance to an aircraft and then radio the information to the aircraft.


  1. a woodwind instrument of the family that includes the bassoon and cor anglais, consisting of a conical tube fitted with a mouthpiece having a double reed. It has a penetrating nasal tone. Range: about two octaves plus a sixth upwards from B flat below middle C
  2. a person who plays this instrument in an orchestrasecond oboe

n.1724, from Italian oboe, from phonetic spelling of Middle French hautbois (itself borrowed in English 16c. as hautboy), from haut “high, loud, high-pitched” (see haught) + bois “wood” (see bush (n.)). So called because it had the highest register among woodwind instruments. Related: Oboist. A woodwind instrument played with a double reed; similar to a bassoon, but pitched higher. Some describe its tone as nasal.

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