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Hammered dulcimer

The hammered dulcimer is a stringed musical instrument with the strings stretched over a trapezoidal sounding board. It is considered to be a member of the zither family. The instrument is typically set at an angle on a stand in front of the musician, who holds a hammer in either hand with which to strike the strings (for the plucked Appalachian dulcimer, see dulcimer).

Versions of this instrument are recorded in Europe and the Middle East throughout recorded history. In Eastern Europe a larger descendant of the hammered dulcimer called the cimbalom is also played which has been used by a number of classical composers, including Zoltan Kodaly and Igor Stravinsky.

The instrument has seen somewhat of a revival in America in the Americal Folk music and Bluegrass traditions. It is also still played in Wales, Northumbria, and the Middle East.

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