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Frets – Double vs Single

Most people today use rather thick single frets, but it seems in the past it was common to use thin double frets – can we learn anything from this? Lute iconography rarely shows enough detail to be sure whether the frets are single or double.

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Some thoughts on string tension

Like many people, I had always wondered why lute strings look so thin in old paintings. Was it because the artist couldn’t be bothered with showing the details of the strings, or was it because the thickest strings were not as thick as we might expect? We know that lutes were strung with sheep gut (and we have no reason to believe that the density of gut was significantly different in the past),

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