A leader asks around the most appropriate word come use when referring come a human being who dram the flute.

You are watching: What do you call someone who plays the flute

I create on music matters, so would appreciate advice on exactly how to write flutist…Many presenters of classic music programmes pronounce words as “floortist”. Is flutist exactly & is is there one more written form?

I can’t talk about the joint “floortist” various other than come say that I’ve never ever heard flutist or flautist pronounced in that way.

The 3 most typical terms I’m familiar with are:flutist <(flū’tĭst)>flautist flute player

I’ve check out that flautist is the preferred British usage. To American ear it sounds pretentious, however ironically, the earliest usage of flautist provided in the OED is native the work-related of an American writer, Nathaniel Hawthorne.

The Italian word for flute is flauto and also the 1860 novel in which the word appears, The Marble Faun, is set in Italy. The an option flautist over flutist may have been prompted by Hawthorne’s desire to add local color.

My center English thesaurus gives floute and floutour because that “flute” and “flute player.” my edition that Chaucer offers flowte and also floyte because that “flute,” flowtour for “flute player,” and floytynge because that “playing on the flute.”

I’ve play in a flute choir. We called ourselves flutists and flute players.

According come a factoid in ~ NationMaster.com, world-renowned flute virtuoso sir James Galway has actually this come say ~ above the matter:

I am a flute player, not a flautist. I don’t have actually a flaut, and I’ve never ever flauted.”

Thanks to Richard Shackleton for post idea.

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21 Responses to “Flautist or Flutist?”

Alexon February 27, 2009 10:37 am

Well, in Spanish and Italian we still speak flauta, and also in Old French it was likewise flaute. English and also other germanic languages embraced the ax at around that time, and also the acquired flautista/flautiste. The hatchet flutist came to English much later, probably again influenced by the French flutist after the old form flaute adjusted to floute.

In modern English the terms emerged to flute and both flautist and flutist, although the 2nd one is much ‘younger’.

mandon February 27, 2009 11:38 am

By ‘floortist’ your leader can’t, surely, have actually meant the ‘r’ to be sounded. As a Brit – heavens, i say that a lot here! – i pronounce floor exactly the same as flaw.

And i’ve only ever heard flautist pronounced ‘flawtist’.

AND i’ve never, ever before come across flutist. Well, possibly once, and i’d have dismissed it together ignorance. Sorry, USA!

My brand-new Penguin qualifies flutist together ‘chiefly NAm and also refers me to flautist. Mine Collins English calls the a variant spelling, ‘Now chiefly U.S.’. The ‘now’ tells me flutist used to be a an ext equal alternative over here.

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Good ol’ boy name Webster and his simplifying.

(Both my dictionaries, btw, provide only the ‘flaw’ (unflawed, lol) pronunciation for flautist.)

I love happening upon a divergence in between UK and also US English that ns haven’t discovered before. Thanx! 80)

Lorrieon February 27, 2009 11:59 am

I assumed a Flautist was someone like me that loves to eat Flautas! Yum