It is named after the Hindu goddess Saraswatiwho is usually depicted holding or playing the instrument. Also known as raghunatha veena is used mostly in Carnatic Indian classical music. There are several variations of the veena, which in its South Indian form is a member of the lute family.
One who plays the veena is referred to as a vainika. It is one of other major types of veena popular today. The others include chitra veenavichitra veena and rudra veena.
Out of these the rudra and vichitra veenas are used in Hindustani musicwhile the Saraswati veena and the chitra veena are used in the Carnatic music of South India. Some people play traditional music, others play contemporary music. In ancient times, the tone vibrating from the hunter's bow string when he shot an arrow was known as the Vil Yazh. The Jya ghosha musical sound of the bow string is referred to in the ancient Atharvaveda.
Eventually, the archer's bow paved the way for the musical bow. Twisted bark, strands of grass and grass root, vegetable fibre and animal gut were used to create the first strings.
Over the veena's evolution and modifications, more particular names were used to help distinguish the instruments that followed. The word veena in India was a term originally used to generally denote "stringed instrument", and included many variations that would be either plucked, bowed or struck for sound.
The veena instruments developed much like a tree, branching out into instruments as diverse as the harp-like Akasa a veena that was tied up in the tops of trees for the strings to vibrate from the currents of wind and the Audumbari veena played as an accompaniment by the wives of Vedic priests as they chanted during ceremonial Yajnas.
Veenas ranged from one string to "Veena musical instrument price in bangalore dating" hundred, and were composed of many different materials like eagle bone, bamboo, wood and coconut shells. The yazh was an ancient harp-like instrument that was also considered a veena.
But with the developments of the fretted veena instruments, the yazh quickly faded away, as the fretted veena allowed for easy performance of ragas and the myriad subtle nuances and pitch oscillations in the gamakas prevalent in the Indian musical system.
It was not until the great Indian Carnatic music composer and Saraswati veena Muthuswami Dikshitar that it began to be popularized as played horizontally. Prior to his time, the number of frets on the veena were less and also movable.
Made in several regions in South India, those made by makers from Thanjavur in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu are to date considered the most sophisticated. However, the purest natural sound is extracted by plucking with natural fingernails on a rosewood instrument construction, which is exemplified by the grandeur of the Mysore Veena.
Sangeeta Ratnakara calls it Ekatantri Veena and gives the method for its construction. While the Saraswati veena is considered in the lute genealogy, other North Indian veenas such as the Rudra veena and Vichitra veena are technically zithers.
Descendants of Tansen reserved Rudra Veena for family and out of reverence began calling it the Saraswati Veena. About four feet in length, its design consists of a large resonator kudam carved and hollowed out of a log usually of jackfruit wooda tapering hollow neck dandi topped with 24 brass or bell-metal frets set in scalloped black Veena musical instrument price in bangalore dating on wooden tracks, and a tuning box culminating in a downward curve and an ornamental dragon's head yali.
If the veena is built from a single piece of wood it is called Ekantha veena. Two rosettes, formerly of ivory, now of plastic or horn, are on the top board palakai of the resonator. Four main playing strings tuned to the tonic and the fifth in two octaves for example, B flat-E flat below bass clef - B flat- E flat in bass clef stretch from fine tuning connectors attached to the end of the resonator across the bridge and above the fretboard to four large-headed pegs in the tuning box.
Three subsidiary drone strings tuned to the tonic, fifth, and upper tonic E flat - B flat- E flat in the tuning given above cross a curving side bridge leaning against the main bridge, and stretch on the player's side of the neck to three pegs matching those of the main playing strings.
All seven strings today are of steel, with the lower strings either solid thick. The veena is played by sitting cross-legged with the instrument held tilted slightly away from the player. The small gourd on the left rests on the player's left thigh, the left arm passing beneath the neck with the hand curving up and around so that the fingers rest upon the frets.
The palm of the right hand rests on the edge of the top plank so that the fingers usually index and middle can pluck the strings.
The drone strings are played with the little finger. The veena's large resonator is placed on the floor, beyond the right thigh. The photo of Veenai Dhanammal more accurately illustrates how the veena is held than the more fanciful Ravi Varma painting.
Like the sitarthe left hand technique involves playing on the frets, controlled pushing on the strings to achieve higher tones and glissandi through increased tension, and finger flicks, all reflecting the characteristics of various ragas and their ornamentation gamaka. Modern innovations include one or two circular sound holes that of the lutesubstitution of machine heads for wooden pegs for easier tuning, and the widespread use of transducers for amplification in performance.
The patron Hindu Goddess of learning and the arts, Saraswatiis often depicted seated upon a swan playing a veena. Lord Shiva is also depicted playing or holding a vina in His form called "Vinadhara," which means "bearer of the vina. Ravana, the antagonist of the Ramayana, who is also a great scholar, a capable ruler and a devoted follower of Shiva, was also a versatile veena "Veena musical instrument price in bangalore dating." Scholars hold that as Saraswati is the goddess of learning, the most evolved string instrument in a given age was placed in her hands by contemporary artistes.
The Vedic sage Yajnavalkya speaks of the greatness of the Veena in the following verse: Saraswathi and Shakti have also been referred to as kachchapi in the Lalitha Sahasranama for example  or vipanchi in the Soundarya Lahari in Sanskrit texts.
Musical compositions like Tyagaraja 's Mokshamugaladha contain philosophies about the spiritual aspects of the veena . Each physical portion of the veena is said to be the seat in which subtle aspects of various gods and goddesses reside in Hinduism. The instrument's neck is Shiva, the strings constitute his consort, Parvati.
The bridge is Lakshmi, the secondary gourd is Brahma, the dragon head Vishnu.
And upon the resonating body is Saraswati. Eminent veena player E. Gayathri has mentioned in many interviews that the Aitareya Upanishad contains a verse stating that human beings are the veena created by God daiva veena and the wooden Saraswati veena is
Veena musical instrument price in bangalore dating man-made veena maanushi veena. According to her, the veena is resemblant of the human skeleton, where the resonating kudam represents the skull, the dandi and the lion Yali face the human backbone, and the twenty-four frets on the fretboard representing the 24 vertebrae of the human spine.
Scholars consider that today four instruments are signified by Veena which in the past has been used as generic name for all string instruments. Modern day evolving of the veena include the Sruti veena more an instrument for theoretical demonstration than for actual playing that was constructed by Dr. Lalmani Misra in early s on which all 22 srutis can be produced simultaneously. Veena represents the system of Indian music.