123ArticleOnline Logo
Welcome to 123ArticleOnline.com!
ALL >> Music >> View Article

Stringed Instruments Of The Renaissance

Profile Picture
By Author: Nathan Weiss
Total Articles: 124
Comment this article
Facebook ShareTwitter ShareGoogle+ ShareTwitter Share

Musical eras and the instruments that created them are on an historical, evolving continuum. But each era, the Renaissance period included, has its own instruments.

The Renaissance was a period so associated with the new, the creative, the break from the status quo, particularly in the arts, it’s no wonder there was an explosion of new stringed instruments used in the creation of music.

Consider first how musical instruments were largely banned in the church during the medieval era (500-1450 CE). The plainchants of male voices in the cavernous cathedrals of Europe were largely what had defined sacred music. Secular music of the homes and taverns and public squares were livelier, with dulcimers, citterns, harps, lutes, and the occasional hurdy-gurdy providing what had to have been more joyous enjoyment of melody and rhythm. The Renaissance period elevated those instruments and their sound – along with the development of newer fine stringed instruments.

What were the stringed instruments that defined the ...
... music of the Renaissance? These are the primary ones:

Lira da braccio: A bowed, seven stringed instrument, it resembles the modern violin, albeit larger with a wide fingerboard. Two of the strings are drones. “Braccio” is Italian for arm, referring to the limb that holds the instrument against the shoulder (akin to the violin positioning).

Rebec: Also considered a precursor to the violin, the rebec had a boat-like (or elongated teardrop) shape carved from a single piece of wood, with between one and five strings played with a bow. It has roots in Morocco and Islamic Spain going back to the 9th century, so it is not entirely an instrument of the Renaissance.

Citole: Historians debate the history of this instrument, as evidence of its origins exists in the first century AD. Carved largely from a single block of wood, the neck is so thick it has a thumbhole for the player to hold as one might a modern guitar. While very much an instrument used in medieval times, it played a key role in the evolution of stringed instruments as discussed (Dr. Emanuel Winternitz, et al.) in terms of how luthiers were constantly innovating upon these instruments, leading to what we have in modern violins, guitars, etc.

Viol/viola da gamba: “Gamba,” Italian for leg, describes the position with which this instrument was held, lending it to comparisons to the modern cello. But it has several differences, even if there is a historical lineage between the two. The viol has five to seven strings (vs. four in a cello), a flat back (vs. curved), sloped shoulders (vs. rounded), and c holes (vs. f holes). The bowing of the viola da gamba is with an underhand movement (vs. the French overhand bow grip). Of all these instruments, it isn’t uncommon to find a violin maker who still crafts and sells viols to modern viol players.

It was with these instruments – as well as the woodwinds (recorders, chalumeau, a precursor to the modern single-reed clarinet, shawm, a precursor to the oboe), brass (trumpet, cornet, natural horn, slide trumpet) keyboards (clavichord, harpsichord, organ), and percussion (drum, timpani, cymbals, bass drum) – that enabled a jauntier, harmonic, complex style of music that eventually led to the baroque, classical and eventually modern music eras.

Total Views: 62Word Count: 534See All articles From Author

Add Comment

Music Articles

1. Explore The Theme & Messages Behind Rob Wegner's Merchandise
Author: Rob Wegner

2. The Role Of Eq In Music Production
Author: Ronak Runwal

3. The Gagliano Family Of Violinmakers
Author: Nathan Weiss

4. Spotify Premium Apk Download - Latest Version: 8.8.48.523
Author: Nimul Islam Mahin

5. The Füssen School Of Violin Making
Author: Nathan Weiss

6. The Ultimate Guide To Gps Vehicle Tracking: Maximizing Efficiency And Compliance In The Eld Mandate Era
Author: Eld Mandate

7. Building The Ultimate Dj Setup: Choosing The Right Equipment
Author: Abhishek Shaw

8. Buy Garden Fence At Affordable Price In Dubai
Author: Bhawna Sharma

9. Andrea Amati And The King Charles Ix Instrument Collection
Author: Nathan Weiss

10. Unleashing The Musical Magic Of Papaandgirls: A Journey Into Pop Rock Bliss
Author: Alice Brin

11. Music Distribution Platforms India Company
Author: Avika

12. Free Music Distribution Company India
Author: Aman

13. Online Vinyl Store
Author: MeraSEO

14. Music Is Life
Author: Wisemonkeys

15. Rob Wegner: A Look At His Music Style
Author: Rob Wegner

Login To Account
Login Email:
Password:
Forgot Password?
New User?
Sign Up Newsletter
Email Address: