Name: Jing Hu.
Type: Bowed > Chordophone.
Region: China > Far East Asia.
Length 50.2 cm.
Acquisition Source: Rufus Guitars, Vancouver Canada.
Description: The jing-hu [in Chinese 京 胡 in Pinyin jīnghú] is the smallest member and the highest pitched of the huqin family of bowed musical instruments. The huqin family of instruments may have originated from the xiqin of the Xi people. The huqin family includes the erhu, gao-hu and ban-hu. The origins of the jing-hu date back to the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC). In Beijing Opera the jing-hu is one of the premiere lead instruments and due to its high pitch doubles as a second human voice.
Construction: The components include a body, shaft, strings, friction tuning pegs and a small brass hook called a [king tong]. Two holes are cut into the body top and bottom, the body is made from a piece of bamboo that is 5.4 cm in diameter (measured from the back of the body). Then a shaft is cut to the length of 50.2 cm and four nodes is inserted into the body. Inside the sound hole behind the body there are two ovoid holes one of which is visible from the back of the instrument. Traditionally snake skin from the Burmese python is applied on the front of the selected bamboo to create the resonance chamber.
On the top of the shaft there are two equidistant holes where the tuning pegs are fitted. A small brass hook called the [king tong] is tied onto the body with a loop of string called the Qian jin. The brass hook or [king tong] serves as an adjustable nut. These holes assist in providing resonance for the sound to travel though. On the front of the body snake skin or synthetic material is applied. This assembly creates the acoustic chamber. A small moveable bridge is place underneath.