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Origins And History Of The Dulcimer

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The dulcimer is a member of the string family. It is further categorized into
the Psaltrey family, a group of instruments that are comprised of strings
stretched across a frame and played by plucking or drumming. The only
difference, in fact, between the dulcimer and the psaltrey is the fact that one
is plucked and the other is drummed. The dulcimer family is divided into two
sections. The dulcimers with keys and dulcimers without keys. A dulcimer with
keys would be played by depressing a key which would move a mechanism that would
cause a hammer to strike the string. The most improved instrument in the keyed
dulcimer section is the piano. Dulcimers that are played without the aid of a
key are usually in the unusual shape of a trapezoid. Early descriptions of this
instrument, dating back to the Middle Ages, describe the instrument as a
rectangular box with strings stretched over two bridges. Both the single and the
double bridged dulcimers are common in traditional Irish music. It is played by
striking the strings with padded wooden hammer.

It is commonly believed that the dulcimer came to Europe from the East sometime
in the fifteenth century. This cannot be true. The dulcimer is closely related
to the yang ch'in from China. However, the yang ch'in was introduced to the
Chinese around 1800. A similar traditional dulcimer found its way to Korea in<...

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Keywords: what is the origin of the dulcimer, history of the dulcimer

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