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date: 16 November 2019



Plucked box zither of the Tuva people of Siberia. It is trapezoidal, about 130 cm long, and has up to 16 metal strings, tuned pentatonically. Modern examples have geared tuners. Two long bridges standing across the soundboard diagonally to one another. Pitch can be inflected by pressing on the strings behind the left bridge as the right hand plucks the strings. Formerly the chadagan was a board zither with four to eight (usually seven) gut or horsehair strings on movable bridges. Related instruments include the Khakass chatkhan, the Tofalar chatïgan and the Mongolian yatga.

The chatkhan (chatgan) is a board zither, with the underside of the thick board hollowed to form a resonator about 100 to 150 cm long. It has five to eight (usually six or seven) strings tuned a 4th or 5th apart and supported by movable bridges, sometimes made of sheep vertebrae. The top surface is slightly convex. It is a popular instrument, used to accompany lyrical, historical, and epic song. Formerly it was played mainly at court and in monasteries, where it was considered sacred and taboo....

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