kithara


kithara
/kith"euhr euh/, n.
a musical instrument of ancient Greece consisting of an elaborate wooden soundbox having two arms connected by a yoke to which the upper ends of the strings are attached.
Also, cithara.
[1350-1400; ME < Gk kithára lyre; cf. GUITAR, ZITHER]

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Large lyre of Classical antiquity, the principal stringed instrument of the Greeks and later of the Romans.

It had a box-shaped resonating body from which extended two parallel arms connected by a crossbar to which 3–12 strings were attached. It was held vertically and plucked with a plectrum; the left hand was used to stop and damp the strings. It was played by singers of the Greek epics, as well as by later professional accompanists and soloists.

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      stringed musical instrument, one of the two principal types of ancient Greek lyres. It had a wooden soundboard and a box-shaped body, or resonator, from which extended two hollow arms connected by a crossbar. Three, originally, but later as many as 12 strings ran from the crossbar to the lower end of the instrument, passing over a bridge on the soundboard. The strings were usually played with a plectrum, the left-hand fingers damping unwanted strings and at times apparently stopping the strings or producing harmonics. In solos, the fingers of both hands sometimes plucked the strings. The kithara was held upright or inclined toward the player, its weight often supported by an over-the-shoulder or wrist-to-yoke armband.

      In early Greek times the rhapsōdoi, or epic singers, accompanied themselves on the kithara, and the phorminx of Homer was probably a form of that instrument. Later the kithara was the lyre of the kitharōdoi, or professional player-singers. Latinized, it became the principal stringed instrument of the Romans. In Latin writings of early Christian Europe, “cithara” often referred to the harp as well as to surviving forms of the lyre. Many instrument names derive from the word kithara—among them guitar, cittern, and zither. See also lyre.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • kithara — kithára s. f. Trimis de siveco, 10.08.2004. Sursa: Dicţionar ortografic  KITHÁRA s.f. Instrument muzical cu coarde în Grecia antică, asemănător cu lira. [< germ. Kithara, gr. kithara]. Trimis de LauraGellner, 13.05.2005. Sursa: DN …   Dicționar Român

  • Kithara — Kith a*ra (k[i^]th [.a]*r[.a]), n. See {Cithara}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Kithăra — (Kathăris, gr.), Zither. Kitharistes, Zitherspieler. Kitharödos, der zur Zither singt …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Kithăra — Kithăra, das als Kunstinstrument den höchsten Rang einnehmende Saiteninstrument der alten Griechen, das sich von der Lyra (s. d.) durch größere Saitenzahl und resonanzkräftigere Bauart unterschied; der Schallkörper der Lyra war gewölbt, der der K …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Kithara — Kithăra (grch.; lat. cithăra), Saiteninstrument, die neuere Gitarre oder Zither; Kitharíst, Zither oder Gitarrenspieler; Kitharöd, Sänger zur K …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Kithara — Apollo Citharoedus with kithara The kithara or cithara (Greek: κιθάρα, kithāra, Latin: cithara) was an ancient Greek musical instrument in the lyre or lyra family. In modern Greek the …   Wikipedia

  • Kithara — Die Kithara (griechisch κιθάρα – heute im Griechischen auch Bezeichnung für die klassische Gitarre) ist ein Saiteninstrument aus der griechischen Antike. Sie war eines der vornehmsten Instrumente, das vorzugsweise zu feierlichen Anlässen gespielt …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kithara — Ki|tha|ra 〈f.; , s od. tha|ren; Mus.〉 7 bis 18 saitiges altgriechisches Zupfinstrument [<grch. kithara; dasselbe: Zither, Gitarre] * * * Ki|tha|ra, die; , s u. …tharen [lat. cithara < griech. kithára, H. u.] (Musik): altgriechisches… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • kithara — Cithara Cith a*ra, n. [L. Cf. {Cittern}, {Guitar}.] (Mus.) An ancient stringed musical instrument resembling the harp. [Also spelled {kithara}.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • kithara — or cithara noun Etymology: Middle English cithara, from Latin, from Greek kithara Date: 14th century an ancient Greek stringed instrument similar to but larger than the lyre and having a box shaped resonator …   New Collegiate Dictionary


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