A sackbut was a kind of wonky trombone used from the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries, and one who plays the sackbut is called a sackbuttist. The word, which has nothing to do with sacks or butts, came into English around the year 1500 from the French noun saqueboute, which used to refer to a type of medieval weapon used to hook mounted soldiers and pull them off their horses - the two were thought to have a visual similarity. That comes from the Old North French verbs saquier, meaning "pull" or "draw", and bouter, meaning "to thrust", two actions required to operate the saqueboute. Finally, those are both relatively more obscure words, so we can't too reliably say where they came from. According to Google NGrams, literary usage of sackbut peaked in the 1610s and has been trending downwards since.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a senior studying government and linguistics at Harvard University, where I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy trivia, politics, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.