Belly [table, soundtable, soundboard, top plate] (Fr. table; Ger. Decke; It. tavola)
- David D. Boyden
[table, soundtable, soundboard, top plate] (Fr. table; Ger. Decke; It. tavola)
The upper surface of the body of a string instrument. It is normally made of a species of pine or spruce of fairly fine and even grain, which runs along the length of the instrument. In bowed string instruments (viols and violins), the belly is arched (see Violin, fig.2); in plucked string instruments (lutes and guitars), the belly is flat. Folk instruments of the fiddle and lute families often have a skin soundtable (for example ...