violon; Ger. Violine, Geige; It. violino; Sp.
Soprano member of the family of string instruments
that includes the viola and cello (the Double
bass is also usually considered to be a member of the violin family though
in some of its features – all explicable in terms of the practicalities of
playing such a large instrument – the influence of the Viol
family is apparent: it is tuned in 4ths rather than 5ths, historically had a
variable number of strings and normally has sloping shoulders and a flat back
that is ¡®broken¡¯ so that the upper section slopes inward towards the neck).
In the Hornbostel-Sachs system the violin is classified as a Chordophone:
bowed lute (or fiddle).
(from The Grove dictionary
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