All over northern Europe and the UK instruments of this design have been found buried in graves from the 5th-7th Century A.D. This ancient design of harp is called a Lyre. These are the instruments of warrior bards, skalds, and the sort of thing that might have been handed around at gatherings for anyone to strum a tune on. Don’t let it’s ancient origins fool you into thinking this is only an instrument for historical reenactment and romanticism of the past! The Lyre, or Rote, can fit in many settings, in Music Therapy and Sound Baths, or to accompany any type of acoustic song, you can pluck melodies and strum chords. The design is impressive, sleek, lightweight, and loud, and can cater to simple and intricate playing styles.
Traditionally these instruments are built using European timbers. Spruce, Maple, Sycamore, Willow and Oak. Here in New Zealand we have such a vast array of unique timbers. So I’ve built my most recent Lyre using Quartersawn Matai soundboard, Elm body, with a Kauri bridge and Puriri details and I’m looking forward to using more varieties, exotic and native. The strings are Nylgut (a high quality synthetic gut string).
I can build other styles of Lyre, Dulcimers, Zithers, Kantele. Please enquire if you’re interested. Orders will take about 4 weeks to complete. Sometimes I have a few in stock that i’ve made already.