Bell Instruments

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Over the centuries, bell founders and campanologists have given names to represent the musical scope and number of bells in a ringing collection.

Single Bell

A single bell is a monotonic instrument. With traditional ringing devices it will always sound one note when struck. Larger bells sound lower notes than smaller bells.


If we add a second bell of a different size, we can play the two together to form a simple chord, or if we ring them in sequence we can ring the simplest of melodies: Ding Dong, Dong Ding or other combinations of the two notes.

We use the word peal as a noun when we refer to a collection of two or more bells that are not installed or fitted for playing musical melodies. We use peal as a verb when we ring this collection of bells together either by swinging them in a gimbal mounting, or simulating this swinging action using strike timing and other means on bells that are hung on stationary beams.