Dan Tinh

Name: Dan Tinh.
Type: Chordophones > Lutes > Dan.
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 321.322.6
Courses: 2 Strings.
Specimen: 1 in collection, from North Vietnam.
Acquisition Source: Thrift Store, San Francisco, USA.
Country: Vietnam.
Region: South East Asia.

Dan Tinh, Lute, Chordophone, Vietnam
Dan Tinh

Description: The đàn tính or tính tẩu [gourd lute], is a stringed musical instrument played by the Tay people of Lạng Sơn Province in Vietnam. Although “tinh tau” originated as a Tay word, both names are used in Vietnamese. The dan tinh is used by shamans in séances in the hope that it will be animated by spirits.

Construction: The instrument has two individual nylon strings. The strings travel over a bridge that is carved to a small size and low hight. Two friction tuning pegs are installed at the left and right sides of the head stock. The body is often cut from a gourd where a sound table is affixed to the top of the gourd, completing the resonator. The strings used were originally of silk although nylon fishing line is often used.

Citations: Bibliography: Trȧn Quang Hai – Stanley Sadie – New Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments Vol. 1 Book A to F, page 544 ; Maurice Abadie, Walter E. J. Tips – Minorities of the Sino-Vietnamese borderland, 2001. “In reality the Tho [Tay] produce a distinct stringed musical instrument called a tinh tau in Tay and dan tinh in Vietnamese of a type also used by the Thai Khao. the Tay version having one string and the Tai Khao version two strings.” ;