violin family (Modern violin family)

~ Family


Developed in the 16th century, these violas da braccio are distinct from the violas da gamba family.
Modern members are:

Past members include the violone (now a considered a viol) and bass viol (a forerunner to the violoncello). Occasionally Octobass is also included as a member.


The violin family of musical instruments was developed in Italy in the 16th century. At the time the name of this family of instruments was viole da braccio which was used to distinguish them from the viol family (viole da gamba). The standard modern violin family consists of the violin, viola, cello, and (possibly) double bass.

Instrument names in the violin family are all derived from the root viola, which is a derivative of the Medieval Latin word vitula (meaning "stringed instrument"). A violin is a "little viola", a violone is a "big viola" or a bass violin, and a violoncello (often abbreviated cello) is a "small violone" (or literally, a "small big viola"). (The violone is not part of the modern violin family; its place is taken by the modern double bass, an instrument with a mix of violin and viol characteristics.)

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subtypes:violino piccolo
derived from:lira da braccio (Renaissance violin)
related instruments:viol family (Viola de gamba family)
consists of:bass violin (Sixteenth century precursor of the (violon)cello) (amount: previously)
double bass (Contrabass of modern violin family)
octobass (Extralarge 3-string Bass) (optional)
violoncello piccolo (for violoncello use "cello")
part of:fiddle family
Wikidata:Q1365097 [info]