history of the guitar

The guitar is the most popular musical instrument in the world. It is good both as part of an orchestra, band or musical group, and in solo exercises, where a musician can enjoy even playing alone with himself. The instrument went to such glory for more than one century.

It is impossible to imagine the modern world without music. It helps us cope with stress, evokes the most incredible emotions, opens memory bins, gives inspiration and develops imagination. It is extremely difficult to find someone who does not listen to music. As well as a person who, for example, does not use the Internet. All are active Internet users and download music, various podcasts every day, but few people know how to do it efficiently, without intrusive suggestions. Only a few percent know about free youtube to mp3 converter and believe that this is the best choice in high-quality downloading of any podcast straight into a convenient format!

So, let’s talk about one of the musical instruments that can give us music.

The History of this musical Instrument

The forerunners of the guitar are considered to be plucked instruments, which at that time did not yet have a fingerboard: cithara and zither. They were played in Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece, and a little later – in Rome. With the advent of the long, there was a need for a one-piece resonator. Initially, it was made from hollow vessels and other bulky objects: a tortoise shell, dried pumpkin fruits, or hollowed-out pieces of wood. The wooden case, made up of their top and bottom decks and sides (sides), were invented in Ancient China at the beginning of the 1st millennium AD.

Further this idea migrated to the Arab countries, embodied in the Moorish guitar, and in the 8th – 9th centuries it came to Europe.

Origin of Name

It originates from Latin language as generally accepted during the Middle Ages. The Greek word “cithara”, which few people in Europe could read after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, was translated into the Latin cithara as a result. Over time, Latin also underwent changes – the word had the form of quitaire, and in the Romano-Germanic languages ​​began to sound like guitar.

Spanish Guitar

Spain was the center of the development of music. During the time of the Cordoba Caliphate, the Moorish guitar became widespread here, and after the reconquest, the Spaniards modernized it, giving it a shape close to modern. The 15th century instruments had 5 paired strings pulled by pegs located on a long head.

By the end of the 18th century, a modern look was taking shape: the guitar acquired six single strings, a comfortable body with cutouts for better retention, and a round hole in the top deck.

musician and guitar maker

Acoustic Guitar

In the 19th century, musician and guitar maker Antonio Torres invented the guitar of modern construction and proportions. Today she calls it classical, it is used both in academic music and when performing songs by amateur musicians for entertainment purposes.

The acoustic guitar has come down to us practically unchanged. It consists of a massive body that serves as a resonator, a neck that is attached to the body with a special screw, and a head on which the tuning pegs are located.

Acoustic guitar has 19 frets – metal ribs on the fretboard that allow you to play notes at a certain interval. At the same time, if on a classical guitar from the nut to the beginning of the body there are 12 frets, then the acoustic one that appeared later has 14. The latter sometimes has a cutout that allows you to play high notes.

Electric Guitar

When electricity began its triumphant march across the planet in the 20th century, manufacturers of musical instruments could not ignore the opportunity to significantly amplify the sound of guitar strings using technical devices. In 1936, the “grandmother” of the electric guitar was first created. It had an aluminum body and a pair of electromagnet-mounted pickups. Thanks to the round shape of the body, more like a banjo, and the material, it has received the nickname “skillet”.

Thanks to the acoustic vibrations into electrical ones and the action of amplifiers, an electric guitar does not need a resonator – its body can be of various shapes, although more often it is made similar to an acoustic guitar.


This instrument reproduces the low frequency range of musical performance. Bass guitar usually has 4 strings and a longer neck. Acoustic variants are very rare, since low frequencies are heard much worse with natural resonance of the cabinet.

In the second half of the 20th century, some virtuoso bassists began to use fretless bass, which made it possible to do without a fixed musical system.

Interesting Facts

  • In the 1950s, a Gibson employee Les Paul made a hybrid – an electric guitar with a hollow resonating body, which made it possible to play without electric current. The leadership of the idea was not interested, and the idea was given to the inventor Leo Fender.
  • The correct posture for playing the classical guitar (for a right-handed person) is a straight back, the left leg is on a special stand, the guitar lies with the bend of the body on the thigh of the left leg. The neck is lifted up 45°. Known to most, the pose on the right knee with a bar parallel to the ground is considered non-academic, “courtyard”.
  • Guitar virtuosos, often playing in different styles and keys during the same composition, sometimes use guitars with two or even three necks, on each of which the strings have a different tuning.


The best way to get to know a guitar is to buy and start playing. Then the history of the creation of the guitar will become much closer to you, and the lines “The bend of the guitar is yellow…” will acquire a special meaning.