St John's C of E Primary School

"Use your God-given gifts to serve others." 1 Peter 4: 10

Lute - Renaissance Christmas 6.12.21

Lute and guitar 

The lute is a kind of musical instrument with strings. 


It first came from the Middle East (from Persia and Arabic descent), through to Spain and then across Europe. It is an ancestor to the classical guitar.  


A lute is made of wood. It has an oval-shaped back and a flat front, with a neck attached to it. Early lutes had four strings or eight sets of two strings. Beneath these strings, there were strings tied to the neck, where the player pressed down to make the notes. These strings were called frets. 

The flat front is known as the sound board. It has a beautifully carved hole in the centre which is called the rose. 

The lute is played by strumming or plucking at the strings. 


King Henry VIII – when King Henry came to the throne, the lute wasn’t that popular (you were more likely to hear a harp played). Playing the lute became a Tudor family pastime. Henry VII gave a lute to each of his children, and all of Henry VIII’s children learned to play the lute as well. Henry also composed music and here is one of his songs performed with a lute and a harp as accompaniment.  

Enrique VIII: "Pastime with good company" | Alamire

A Very Renaissance Christmas

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Good King Wenceslas - lute & renaissance guitar