Change of strings - david yerly

This gallery is dedicated to the advancement and history of string instruments. From lutes, to sitars, every culture had a fair share of instruments strung up with musical ingenuity, and artistic aesthetic. The shapes, decoration, and "eye candy" add on pieces of these instruments reflected the culture they were made in. Let's take a journey through the evolution of the modern day string instrument.

This is a very old wooden instrument with 5 strings. It is an ancestor of the lap steel instrument. On the right you can see it had what became modern day tuning pegs that have been rusted over from time. On the left, you can see string ties that they used to anchor the strings to the instrument. It is polished, and the strings appear to be metal. While it is crude, it was probably used to create some very beautiful music back during its prime.
This piece is a Chinese instrument called a Qin. The traditional instrument has 10 strings represented in the piece, and was made of wood. Usually the Qin had ornate designs along the sides, but this one is very plain in its design which makes it simple, yet beautiful. The wood is the highlight with this piece, and it has a darker tone on the sides, with lighter fingerboard areas. You can see where the strings were tuned, and anchored on either side of it.
This is a oriental (Chinese) Lute. It is the sound you hear in many Chinese musical pieces, and is one of the most popular instruments from that culture. This particular instrument only has 3 strings tuned to the notes of a pentatonic scale. The drum on the bottom projects the sound outward while the strings run up to the tuning pegs up on the top. This is an ancestor of the guitar in many ways, and is constructed with wood, and some sort of animal skin over the drum.
This instrument is called a Se. It was widely used similar to the lap steel. This particular piece has very advanced design elements in the bridge, and has matching tuning pegs to pull the whole piece together. The fretboard was made of wood, and the bridge appears to be some sort of metal. This is a very beautiful piece that effected the advancement of string instruments.
This is a very interesting piece in that it is a baritone violin. This 12 stringed instrument is an innovation not used much these days, but it appears to have been used in the 1600's. The wood is much less refined than most violins you see from back in this time period, but it is still a beautiful creation. The whole piece is made of wood glued together to create a shape comfortable to play like a violin.
While string instruments are usually thought of as being guitars, or violins, pianos are in that family as well. This piece is a harpsichord. It is an ancestor of the piano with a much harsher sound because instead of hammers, it has small hooks that plucked the strings as you pressed the keys. This is a masterful creation, and it is a very beautiful piece made of wood, and potentially ivory for the keys. The artistry of this piece does not only come from the appearance of the instrument, but also the mechanics that make it functional. Quite an incredible feat for being made in 1773.
This instrument was India's answer to the Oriental Lute. Called the Kamanchech, this instrument was played with a bow, and the steel over the drum resonated with a very interesting sound. This piece is beautiful due to its decorative designs around the resonator, and the simplicity of the look of the instrument itself. Wood, metal, and possibly some ceramics were used to craft this interesting piece.
This piece is an incredibly old harp with an arched piece of wood as the neck of the instrument. It boggles the mind to think how much skill went into making this wood stable while putting tension on it with metal strings. This is what ended up becoming the modern harp we see today. This only has four strings while modern harps have 20 sometimes more depending on the size. This piece appears to be made of wood, and metal.
The Chitarrone was an instrument that became the guitar after many renditions. It was a very large, and resonant instrument that was strummed by the player. This piece was made of wood, and the strings were metal. this piece is quite ornate in its design with small holes making it resonate through the wood itself.
This piece is a viola which interestingly has eight strings rather than the current four strings. Its made of wood, and probably some sort of animal gut for the strings. This was the traditional way to create strings, and is still sometimes used today. the construction seems very traditional yet somehow it shows its age. Beautiful Piece for being from the 1700's
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This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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