hurdy gurdy: characteristics, price, and history of the ethnic musical instrument


Hurdy-gurdy is a very unusual instrument invented in Europe. It looks like a violin, but when you turn the attached handle, you can hear a violin-like, bagpipe-like sound, which is a strange instrument. It is said that in medieval Europe, they danced to the beautiful melody played. It is an instrument distributed throughout Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Northern Europe and Europe. It has an old origin and is said to have begun to be used around the 11th century.


The English name for the hurdy gurdy is “hurdy gurdy”, which is where the instrument originated in Hungary, Europe. It can also play a drone, which now features a unique melody and key. You can use the bow and bridge to adjust the pitch of any stringed instrument.

About the price

The price is quite high. There are items ranging from around 200,000 yen to around 1 million yen.

History of hurdy gurdy

Hurdy-gurdy is a hand-cranked violin that originated in medieval Europe. It is an instrument distributed throughout Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Northern Europe and Europe. The origin is old, and it is said that the organistrum, which began to be used around the 11th century, has become smaller and generalized during the Renaissance period as the hurdy-gurdy. Later, the “organistrum” was downsized, allowing one player to operate the crank and keyboard at the same time. During the Renaissance, hurdy-gurdy was as popular as bagpipes, with two types of contours. One is like a guitar and the other is a round body like a lute with ribs. In modern times, Hurdy-Gurdy spread to Eastern Europe and became more diversified in the western Slavic, German and Hungarian languages. In the 18th century, it became a fad in French social circles. Many of the hurdy-gurdy were obsolete in the 20th century, but some are still today.

Features of hurdy gurdy

Hurdy-gurdy is a lute bowed string instrument with a keyboard that is widely distributed in Europe. You can make a sound by turning a wooden disk with the handle and rubbing the strings, and you can change the sound like a keyboard instrument by operating the keys. A major feature is the use of the keyboard, which is similar to a bagpipe in terms of tone and nature. It is an instrument that has virtually disappeared until recently because it is extremely difficult to tune and maintain. There is no standard design for modern hurdy-gurdy, but the 6-string French “Viel a Le” is best known. In modern musical instruments, there are two main body shapes, one is the guitar type and the other is the lute type. Due to the long tradition of Hurdy-gurdy in France, French is used as the terminology used by the player.

Hurdy gurdy song

Hurdy-gurdy is a very enthusiastic instrument, so it is not often used in popular songs. Therefore, it is an instrument that is often used in folk music and BGM.


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