Timpani, also called kettledrums, came to Europe during the Crusades from the Moors. The title of kettledrum was changed to timpani after 1660. During the Baroque period, timpanis used were used as cavalry drums, and were put to orchestral use after they were manually tuned to the trumpeter's keys of D or C. The heads of the timpani are tunable using a pedal that varies the tension of the membrane. The range is a 5th, so a pair of timpani could cover an octave.

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