sitar

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sitar

(sĭtär`), fretted string instrument with a gourdlike body and a long neck, similar to the lute. It has from 3 to 7 gut strings, tuned in fourths or fifths (or both), and a lower course of 12 wire strings that vibrate sympathetically with the first set. It is played alone or in a small ensemble. Indigenous to the India subcontinent, the sitar was popularized in the West in the 1960s by the Indian virtuoso Ravi ShankarShankar, Ravi
(Robindra Shankar Chowdhury), 1920–2012, Indian sitarist and composer, b. Varanasi. He was the first Indian instrumentalist to attain an international reputation and is credited with introducing traditional Indian music to the West.
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 and is sometimes used in rock music.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sitar

 

a stringed musical instrument. The sitar has a wooden convex body, a long neck with 16 to 18 movable frets, and three melody strings and up to ten sympathetic strings. The strings are tuned in fourths and fifths. The sitar is native to India, where it is a plucked instrument, and Uzbekistan and Tadzhik-istan, where it is often bowed as well as plucked. [23–1426–]

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

sitar

a stringed musical instrument, esp of India, having a long neck, a rounded body, and movable frets. The main strings, three to seven in number, overlie other sympathetic strings, the tuning depending on the raga being performed
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005