Doshpuluur

Name: Doshpuluur.
Type: Chordophones > Lutes.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 321.321.6
Tunings: B / F# / B
Luther: Marat Damdyn.
Country: Tuva, Russian Federation.
Region: Far East Asia.

Description: The doshpuluur [in Tuvan: дошпулуур, doshpuluur] it is a lute that is found in Tuva. It is related to other neighbouring lutes, “topshur”. Like other stringed instruments of Tuva, it is traditionally used as an accompaniment for a solo performance.

Traditionally doshpuluur had only two strings, three stringed instruments are the most common nowadays. There are even four stringed Doshpuluur available. The doshpuluur is played by plucking and strumming.

Tuning: The two strings are commonly tuned a perfect fifth apart, with the third string usually forming the octave. Sometimes the two strings are tuned a perfect fourth apart. My instrument came with the tuning B / F# / B.

Construction: The doshpuluur is built around a slightly tapered rectangular body. The body is created from a frame, that is stretched with two membranes of animal hide over each side. The doshpuluur has a neck that is inserted into the body after a hole is drilled according to the diameter of the neck shaft.

The neck usually features a simple to ornate carving of a horses head as the head stock. The horse is a significant symbol in the mythology of this region. Hence its addition as ornamentation on musical stringed instruments, such as the doshpuluur [Tuvan] Morin Khuur [Mongolian]. These instruments are affixed with wooden friction tuning pegs. Although the use of machine gear guitar tuners on instruments such as the doshpuluur is common place.

The neck is inserted into the frame in which three strings travel from bottom of the instrument to the nut and head-stock. Originally wooden tuning pegs were used although it is the norm to see doshpuluur with guitar tuning gears attached in place. A moveable bridge is fitted underneath the strings.

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