ⓘ Topshur

                                     

ⓘ Topshur

The topshur is a two or three-stringed lute played by the Western Mongolian tribes called the Altai Urianghais, the Altais, and the Tuvans. The topshur is closely tied to the folklore of Western Mongolian people and accompanied the performances of storytellers, singing, and dancing. According to descriptions given by Marco Polo, the Mongols also played the instruments before a battle.

                                     

1. Construction and design

All topshur are homemade and because of this, the materials and shape of the topshur vary depending on the builder and the region. For example, depending on the tribe, the string might be made of horsehair or sheep intestine. The body of the topshur is bowl shaped and usually covered in tight animal skin. The Kalmykian topshurs form is more similar to that of the Kazakh Dombra and the Russian Balalaika.