關於吉他

The Classical Guitar
Its Evolution

The Classical Guitar – Its Evolution, Players and Personalities Since 1800

 

This book deals with the evolution of the classical guitar since 1800. Many excellent books have been written in past years on the history of the guitar and its origins before that time. These are listed at the end of this chapter for those readers who wish to extend their research of this earlier period in great detail. Nevertheless, as a start to this chapter I believe it necessary to make the reader briefly aware of the origins of the guitar before 1800.

For many years several guitar scholars and historians put forward the theory that the guitar’s ancestor was the Persian ud. They claimed that the Spanish guitar gradually evolved from this lute-like instrument after the Moors brought the instrument to Spain when they invaded the Iberian peninsula around 711 AD. However, more recent research has shown that the six-string classical guitar, as we know it today, evolved in a different manner.

The first guitar-like instrument on record is shown on a 1400BC archaeological object taken from the city gates of the new Hittite settlement at Alaja Huyuk. It shows a Hittite musician playing a long-necked guitar-shaped instrument rather than the more common tanbur. During this period of history the popular instrument of the region was the tanbur which, although having a fretted or marked neck, had a distinctive bowl-shaped body as opposed to the guitar shape of today. The word guitar itself is derived from two Persian words, tar – meaning string, and char – meaning four. Therefore char-tar stood for a four-stringed instrument. Many of these early stringed instruments originally had four strings. Over the years the name char-tar gradually evolved into the word guitarra in Spain and then into similar names throughout most of Europe. An exception was Portugal, where the word for a guitar has always been vilolao, derived from the Latin word fidicula (a small plucked fiddle-like instrument).