The explanation of the terms listed below refer to their usage in the field of Mechanical Music. Many of the descriptions are from the book The Golden Age of Automatic Musical Instruments by MBSI member Arthur A. Reblitz, published by the Mechanical Music Press, Woodsville, New Hampshire; copyright 2001. They are used here with permission of the author and publisher. Permission is granted for writers to use a limited number of brief excerpts provided credit is given to the MBSI web site, the title of the original work and the author. Written permission is required for all other uses. German nouns and words that are also names of places are capitalized.
necessaire: A small case, sometimes in the shape of a piano or other elegant form, with such "necessary" items as scissors, thread, needles, etc. Many also have a miniature musical movement.
nickelodeon: 1. An early theatre, mainly circa 1903-1914, which charged 5 cents admission. Nickelodeon = nickel + odeon (the Greek word for theatre). * Synonym: nickelodeon theatre. 2. Term used to describe a coin-operated piano, orchestrion, or similar instrument. (Modern usage; never used by the manufacturers. Such instruments originally were called electric pianos, orchestrions, etc. The nickelodeon term has become very popular and is in wide use among collectors and the public today.)