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stringed musical instrument of ancient origin, the strings of which are plucked with the fingers. Harps were found in paintings from the 13th cent. B.C. at Thebes. In different forms it was played by peoples of nearly all lands throughout the ages. The harp was particularly popular with the Irish from the 9th cent. They adopted the small instrument still in use, called the Irish harp, as a national symbol. The larger instrument was well known on the Continent by the 12th cent. During the 15th cent. the harp came to be made in three parts, as it is today: sound box, neck, and pillar. The strings are stretched between the sound box and the neck; into the neck are fastened the tuning pegs. Chromatic harps, having a string for each tone of the chromatic scale, have appeared since the late 16th cent., but none has been as practical as the diatonic harp, made in the late 17th cent. in the Tyrol and equipped with hooks capable of altering the pitch of any string by a semitone. A pedal mechanism that shortened the strings was devised (c.1720) in Germany. The harp was perfected with Sébastien Érard's invention (c.1810) of the double-action pedals, which can shorten each string twice, raising the pitch by a semitone or a tone. The harp appeared occasionally in the orchestra in the 18th cent., but its regular inclusion there, as well as most of its solo literature, dates from the late 19th cent.


See R. Rensch, The Harp (1970) and Harps and Harpists (1989).


A metal device fitted into the socket of a lamp that holds a lampshade.


1. a large triangular plucked stringed instrument consisting of a soundboard connected to an upright pillar by means of a curved crossbar from which the strings extend downwards. The strings are tuned diatonically and may be raised in pitch either one or two semitones by the use of pedals (double-action harp). Basic key: B major; range: nearly seven octaves
2. an informal name (esp in pop music) for harmonica
References in periodicals archive ?
The December data on Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) volume released on March 13 by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) showed a sharp drop in December volume compared with November's HARP production.
The Credit Union offers an array of home loan products, including Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) loans, Fannie Mae Homepath Loans, Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans, fixed loans, jumbo loans and adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) loans.
com, LLC (loanDepot), survey found that more than half of homeowners who refinanced through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) in the last year had been turned down previously when they tried to refinance.
30, 2013, refinance share of mortgage activity is at 79% of total applications and the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) share of refinance applications is at 26%.
Expanded Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) provides refinancing loans and relief to homeowners
2, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) launched a nationwide campaign to inform homeowners about the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP).
The various Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) programs have helped, each allowing another segment of underwater borrowers to benefit from low rates.
Credit Union offers Home Affordable Refinance Program
24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) next week will take part in a Google+ Hangout to answer consumer questions about the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP).
paragraph] Through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) programs, recent announcements for non-government-sponsored enterprise (non-GSE) loans that are underwater and the Federal Reserve's actions, the government is attempting to ensure that as many homeowners as possible have the opportunity to refinance and take advantage of historically low interest rates.
As a result of this continuing problem, the government designed a pair of programs, the Home Affordability Modification Program (HAMP) and the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), to aid these borrowers.
23, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) today launched a nationwide campaign to inform homeowners about the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP).

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