Robin the Busker wrote:I have noticed a few references stating that some early (pre-1900) mountain dulcimers were gut strung. Has anyone seen or better still played an early gut strung mountain dulcimer?
In shape it is most like a "pochette," the little instrument carried by dancing-masters in the olden days, although very much larger of course. It is strung with three strings, either gut or wire. Two of these are tuned in unison while the third is tuned a fifth below. The outer one of the two in unison is the only frettled string, the other two supplying a drone bass, giving somewhat the effect of the bagpipe. The dulcimore (accent on the last syllable) is held on the knees and the strings are plucked with a piece of leather or a quill. The melody is played upon the fretted string, for which purpose a quill or small stick is employed.
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