Type: Chordophones > Lutes.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 321.322.5
Tuning: D A D G.
Region: Eastern Europe.
Description: The cobza [also cobsa, kobuza, kobuz, coboz or koboz] is a multi-stringed instrument of the lute family of folk origin popular in Romanian and Moldovan folklore. It is considered the oldest instrument used for accompaniment in the region. It is also used in the Hungarian folk music revival.
There are differing accounts as to the precise origins of this instruments. Organologically in observing the construction one can see the similarities between this instrument and the mandore. It was also played by Jewish musicians in Moldova in the 19th century.
This type of Cobza does differ from the Ukrainian Kobza, an instrument of a different construction and origin. The cobza is tuned generally to D A D G although depending on region and style of player the tuning will differ.
Construction: The Romanian cobza is metal-strung, although nylon-strung models exist mostly in Hungary and has a very short neck without frets. Although a newer fretted cobza can be found in the Republic of Moldavia with a bent-back pegbox. The back is ribbed. It is usually double or triple strung and often has a characteristic flat end clasp.
Citations: Bibliography: Websites: Youtube: Instrumente muzicale tradiționale românești [Video] ;