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zither

[zith-er, zith -] /ˈzɪθ ər, ˈzɪð-/
noun
1.
a musical instrument, consisting of a flat sounding box with numerous strings stretched over it, that is placed on a horizontal surface and played with a plectrum and the fingertips.
Origin of zither
1840-1850
1840-50; < German < Latin cithara < Greek kithárá; see kithara
Related forms
zitherist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for zither
Historical Examples
  • My grandfather plays the violin and I the zither—we also go to fairs.

    The Belovd Vagabond William J. Locke
  • It was exceedingly faint, like the distant thrumming of a zither.

    The Blind Spot Austin Hall
  • I had once passed six months in Bavaria, where I had learned to love the zither.

    Tenting on the Plains Elizabeth B. Custer
  • There also in the evening Bavarian minstrels jodel, and play the zither.

    Historic Oddities Sabine Baring-Gould
  • It sounds like a zither players sweetest songs, said the rider.

    Christ Legends Selma Lagerlf
  • On an unlucky day one of the nieces took it into her head to study the zither.

    Nightmare Tales H. P. Blavatsky
  • Aspasia is the scale of the zither, without whom our strings would not sound.

    Historical Miniatures August Strindberg
  • And so full was he of the idea of how to set about cleaving the log that he forgot even his zither.

  • Then she called to him: 'Why are you so cast down this evening, that you do not play on your zither?'

  • Their principal instruments are the violin, the violoncello, and a sort of zither.

    Round About the Carpathians Andrew F. Crosse
British Dictionary definitions for zither

zither

/ˈzɪðə/
noun
1.
a plucked musical instrument consisting of numerous strings stretched over a resonating box, a few of which may be stopped on a fretted fingerboard
Derived Forms
zitherist, noun
Word Origin
C19: from German, from Latin cithara, from Greek kithara
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for zither
n.

stringed musical instrument, 1850, from German Zither, from Old High German zitara, from Latin cithara, from Greek kithara "lute" (see guitar).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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18
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