Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Baroque Musical Instruments

The Percussion Instruments

Drums, bells, tambourines, and finger cymbals were all common in Medieval and Renaissance Europe, and had their origins in antiquity. Jews' Harps were introduced from Asia around 1350, and have remained popular ever since. Triangles were common by the 14th century. The tambourine a cordes, dating at least from the 9th century, consists basically of a long rectangular box with 2-5 strings along its length, although the form varies. The strings are either strummed or struck with a stick and melodies can be played on a fretted version. Although it fell from common use at the end of the Renaissance, it still survives today.

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