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THE old Viols, the family of stringed instruments that preceded the Violin, Viola,
'Cello and Double Bass of today, had a somewhat smaller tone than these, and were both shaped and played rather differently. They had five, six, or seven strings, against the four of their modern counterparts. Their names were the Treble (or Discant). the Tenor, Bass and Double Bass Viols. The charmingly named Viola d'Amore was a Tenor Viol which had sympathetic strings ; that is, seven (usually) strings of gut, with seven, or fourteen, others of fine metal stretched beneath. These vibrate in sympathy with those above, and produce an uncommon and beautiful tone.
(Picture on page 219.)
THE Spinet was our early Piano, but instead of its strings, being at a high tension on an iron frame, struck by hammers, they were
. at but a low tension and were plucked by quills, or spines (hence ' Spinet '), that stuck out from projections on the back ends of the keys. The names Spinet and Virginals mean practically the same instrument. The difference was merely that of shape. The Virginal was oblong. The Spinet, harp-shaped, was sometimes known as the ' couched harp.'
THE Viola da Gamba (' leg viol '), the predecessor of the 'Cello, was very popular until about the middle of the eighteenth century. It had at first six, later seven strings. In Twelfth Night we are told that Sir Andrew Aguecheek could' play o' the viol-de-gamboys.'
(Picture on page 218.)


Unknown: Double Bass
Unknown: Sir Andrew Aguecheek

About this project

This site contains the BBC listings information which the BBC printed in Radio Times between 1923 and 2009. You can search the site for BBC programmes, people, dates and Radio Times editions.

We hope it helps you find information about that long forgotten BBC programme, research a particular person or browse your own involvement with the BBC.

Through the listings, you will also be able to use the Genome search function to find thousands of radio and TV programmes that are already available to view or listen to on the BBC website.

There are more than 5 million programme listings in Genome. This is a historical record of the planned output and the BBC services of any given time. It should be viewed in this context and with the understanding that it reflects the attitudes and standards of its time - not those of today.

To read scans of the Radio Times magazines from the 1920s, 30s, 40s and 50s, you can navigate by issue.

Welcome to BBC Genome

Genome is a digitised version of the Radio Times from 1923 to 2009 and is made available for internal research purposes only. You will need to obtain the relevant third party permissions for any use, including use in programmes, online etc.

This internal version of Genome, which includes all the magazine covers, images and articles as well as the programme listings from the Radio Times, is different to the version of BBC Genome that is available externally/to the public. It is only available inside the BBC network.

Your use of this version of Genome is covered by the BBC Acceptable Use of Information Systems Policy and these terms.

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