Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 20 October 2019

Tombak [dombak]locked

  • Jean During



Goblet drum of Iran, known since the early 19th century. It is commonly known as zarb (‘beat’). It is used in entertainment music, in some folk traditions (e.g. those of Lorestan) and in art music. The drum is made from a single block of walnut or mulberry wood, turned and hollowed out. It is 40 to 45 cm in height and 20 to 28 cm in diameter. It was used originally as an accompanying instrument, but its technique was considerably developed by the virtuoso Hossein Tehrani (1911–76), who extended the range of beating methods and sonorities and exploited its potential as a solo instrument. Iranian gymnasiums (zūrkhāne: ‘house of force’) use an earthenware tombak, about 70 cm in diameter, to provide a rhythmic background for exercises. Its powerful tone and beating technique distinguish it from its classical counterpart. The tombak can be likened to the Afghan zirbaghali...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.