An instrument popular in the Medieval and Renaissance eras. The lute is a plucked string instrument of the guitar family, it has a short, fretted neck, a rounded back, and a large body something between oval- and pear-shaped. The number of strings is variable, as is the size, but in the Renaissance, lutes with six courses of strings tuned in A or G became standard. The lute enjoyed immense popularity in the Renaissance, partially due to its beautiful tone, its portability, and its aptitude for accompanying the voice.
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