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The Shashtar, Sheshtar or Shashtay (probably from Persian Şaş-tar or Şeş-tar, ششتار or شش‌تار, lit.'six-string', 'having six strings') is a stringed musical instrument of the lute family. It was mentioned historically by Evliya Çelebi and Abd al-Qadir Maraghi.[1][2] It is or was played in Iran/Persia, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan and elsewhere.[3][4][5][6][7] It may have been developed during the Safavid dynasty from the tambur.[8][9] Like the tambur, it has a floating bridge and a wooden soundboard (not skin like the rubab etc). The 6 gut strings were in 3 double courses, and thus it may be a forerunner of the Tar.[10][11]

Quick facts: String instrument, Other names, Classificatio...
6-stringed Şeştar shown in mural in Chehel Sotoun.
String instrument
Other namesSheshtar, Shashtay, Şeştar, Sheshtay
Classification String instrument
Hornbostel–Sachs classification
(Composite chordophone)
DevelopedAncient Persia or Central Asia

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