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Lutes are the direct descendants of the Persian and Arabian instrument called the "Ud". The ud was first introduced to the Spanish by the Moors. It spread throughout Europe and grew in popularity during the Crusades. Shaped like an
By the fifteenth century, the lute came to be plucked by the fingers than a plectrum. By the end of the
The lute is held across the body, much like a guitar is placed when playing. A lutist places his thumb on the fingerboard and places his fingers on or in between the frets to change pitch. The strings are plucked with the right thumb, index finger, middle finger and the ring finger. Lutenists play a note as long as possible. Lute music normally never has rests in them - the lute player holds the pitch as long as the next note should be played. The lute was extremely popular during the sixteenth and seventeenth century. The popular English lute composer John Dowland produced solo lute music that is considered unsurpassed even today.
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