Gaïta Medieval Instruments

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by Chris Elmes


Citole picture Citole MS

This citole is a reconstruction of one of the instruments from the famous illuminations in the El Escorial MS of the Cantigas de Santa Maria (late 13th century Spain).

It is strung with 6 gut strings tuned in 4ths with octaves on the lower two courses (Dd Gg c f). The top two strings can be tuned down a semitone to give a renaissance tuning of 4th-3rd-4th    (Dd Gg B e).

The citole has a good strong tone and can be played as a melody instrument or strummed and complements a medieval fiddle especially well.


length:  750mm
width:  200mm
depth body: 50mm
depth overall: 65mm
string length: 520mm

These instruments are no longer being made commercially

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Contact: Chris Elmes
(Edinburgh, Scotland)
(+44) 0131 557 2397

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Last updated 1st October 2007