Made by Jiu-cheng (Chinese, 19th century)
Guangzhou (Canton), China
Wood, ivory, bone, gut
L. 37 1/8 in. (94.2 cm), L. of body 23 7/8 in. (60.5 cm), Max. W. 8 7/8 in. (22.5 cm), Max. D. 1 7/8 in. (4.7 cm), L. of pegs 5 7/8 in. (15 cm), Vibrating L. of strings 28 1/2 in. (72.4 cm)
The Crosby Brown Collection of Musical Instruments, 1889 (89.4.52)
The term pipa has been known since the third century B.C. It originally described the playing motion of the right handpi, "to play forward" (left), and pa, "to play backward" (right). In addition to its use in the opera and in storytelling ensembles, the pipa has a solo repertoire of highly programmatic, virtuosic music.