Page:Frederic Shoberl - Persia.djvu/201

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The baglama or tamboura, which has but three strings, two of steel and one of brass. Round the handle are fastened catgut-strings, to render the sounds sharper.

The tchehizdeh, which, according to Kämpfer, has sometimes eight and at other nine strings, which accord together, two and two; but when there are nine, the last three agree. The shape of this instrument is very remarkable.

The kemantcheh, likewise called rebab, has sometimes three or four strings, though most frequently but two, one of which is set a third higher than the other. When well played, this instrument gives the sweetest sounds of any: it is played with a bow furnished with horse-hair. The handle is a cone, of elegant shape and carefully wrought, having as many pegs as there are strings. The body is circular, and about a span a diameter: it supports a bridge, and terminates in an iron style, a palm and a half in length. The instrument, including the handle and the foot, is about five palms long.

The tchartar has four strings, and is likewise played with a bow: the handle is short and narrow; the body oblong, very broad, and open at the upper end; the lower is much smaller, round, and closed by a little wooden bridge.

The tchenk is a kind of dulcimer with six strings, very common in Persia. The tchenk is touched with small curved sticks or feathers.

Wind Instruments.

The nefir, which has given its name to the instruments of this class, is a sort of straight trumpet, an ell in length, the sound of which is tolerably sweet.

The carhana is another kind of trumpet, of great length; the shortest being longer, according to Chardin, than the height of an ordinary man; some measure seven or eight feet. They are made of copper or brass, and are of unequal bulk; for the tube is very narrow to the distance of a foot from the mouth, which is from two to four inches in diameter. Thence downward it gradually increases in size, till at the base it is sometimes four feet in circumference. This trumpet cannot be played, unless it be supported for the musician.; the sound which it gives corresponds with the dimensions of the instrument. When heard alone, it is harsh; but when accompanied by other instruments, it serves for a bass, and produces a pleasing effect.

The shak-nefir, or curved trumpet, is of copper and very large.

The musicar is nothing but the horn made by our tinmen.