Lyre of Ares (God of War) – The Epic Lyre of War – Ancient Greek Lyre (Chelys – 13 strings) – Top Quality HandCrafted Musical Instrument
Then the bard struck the chords that began his sweet song, and told of the love of Ares and Aphrodite of the lovely crown, how they lay together in secret in Hephaestus’ house, and how Ares gave her a host of gifts while dishonoring the Lord Hephaestus’ bed. – Homer, Odyssey (VIII: 256-366)
This is a replica of an ancient Greek lyre, named after Ares (Ἄρης in ancient Greek) who was the ancient God of War, and father of two sons, Fear and Terror. It is dedicated to Ares, as it was initially tested (and sounded amazingly) by tuning it to the ancient Dorian mode, which according to the writings of Plato & Aristotle it could inspire bravery in battle (in fast paces).
Manufactured at the premises of the ancient Europos (Northern Greece) by a family of musicians and luthiers, the “Lyre of Ares” or the “Epic Lyre of War” is made of (and only) natural materials available during the antiquity. This ancient artifact was evolved to become a modern music instrument ready to be used by both amateur and professional musicians (for example, a modern tuning method was chosen instead of the ancient hard-to-use one). For all the minor (but very important) alterations, latest technologies were used during the prototyping phase (such as 3d Scanning and 3d Modeling).
The Greeks were ambivalent toward Ares: although he embodied the physical valor necessary for success in war, he was a dangerous force, “overwhelming, insatiable in battle, destructive, and man-slaughtering”. He is well known as the lover of Aphrodite, the goddess of love, who was married to Hephaestus, god of craftsmanship.
This lyre has 13 nylon & gut strings (an additional set of strings is included). The soundbox, the arms, the tailpiece, the crossbar, the bridge and tuning keys by wood, the sound-board by animal skin, and the plectrum by wood. The lyre has the physical colours of the wood in use, with a thin layer of varnish to protect the wood and make the whole instrument even more imposing on the eye.
The lyre’s height is 67 cm with 50 cm width, while its soundbox dimensions are 35 x 32 x 5,5 cm. Last, the length of the vibrated strings is 50 cm (the lyricist can adjust the length by 3-5 cm).
What’s more, this lyre is part of a new product line that has almost straight arms (and not the usual bended ones), enabling the instrument to afford greater string tenses or even metallic guitar strings.
We use only top quality kinds of wood, ideal for musical instruments, such as walnut, cherry, mahogany, mulberry, maple, ebony etc. In case you are interested to learn what specific kinds of wood we used for this specific lyre’s parts, don’t hesitate to ask us!
Along with every lyre, a handbook is provided including all the different ancient Greek scales (for tuning the lyre) in the Aristoxenian tradition such as the Mixolydian, the Phrygian, the Dorian etc. What’s more, the oldest music melodies that had survived are included such as the Hellenistic “Seikilos Epitaph” (2.000 years old, the oldest known complete melody of the human kind), and further descriptions regarding what modes were used in the antiquity for evoking specific feelings such as sorrow, happiness, bravery etc. Last, a full-color 68-pages book (in the form of a .pdf file) will be given upon request, with more than 100 photos, describing the research behind our lyres and the whole design process.
Since the beginning of 2015, every Luthieros lyre comes with a wooden plectrum, an extra set of nylon strings and a unique hand-strap (in Greek: “τελαμών”). A premium package, for a premium and authentic music instrument! A beautifully handmade premium wooden case for storing and moving around the instrument is also available here.
The lyres available for purchase are very limited. Needles to say that no animals were harmed…
“So then, I will give you this lyre, glorious son of Zeus…” – Homeric Hymn to Hermes, line 490
| Learn how to play the ancient Greek lyre!
Michael Levy, the most well-known ancient lyre player around the world, put together for us 11 video lessons (available online at our website). No matter if you are a completely amateur or a professional music player, you can play the lyre following Michael’s steps: http://en.luthieros.com/learn-to-play-the-lyre
| Hear how our ancient lyres sound:
(1) Hear how the “Game of Thrones” theme song would sound like if it was played in Ancient Greece (must-see), hear audio recordinga from various of our lyres, or watch players around the world playing ancient melodies with Luthieros Music Instruments: http://en.luthieros.com/be-inspired-by-players-around-the-world
(2) Check the latest music album by world-known lyre player, Michael Levy, using Luthieros’ Lyre of Apollo! Support his music on iTunes or his website: http://www.ancientlyre.com/
| Check a short presentation of “The Lyre 2.0 Project”:
https://vimeo.com/85653759 (in English)
| Read the extended review of one of our lyres by the most well-known ancient lyre player around the world: http://www.ancientlyre.com/the_lyre_20_project/
* Dozens of music stringed instruments around the world are direct descendants of the ancient Greek lyre: gue (Scotland), rote (England), crwth (Wales), hearpe (Germanic or Anglo-Saxon lyre), giga (Norway), talharpa (Estonia), jouhikko (Finland), knar (Armenia), lutnia (Poland), kinnor (Israel), sarangi (Nepal), sammu or tanbura or zami or zinar (Iraq, Arabian peninsula, Yemen), barbat or ektara (Pakistan), ektara (India and Bangladesh), nares-jux (Siberia), chang (Iran), kissar or tanbura or simsimiyya (Egypt, Sudan), begena or dita or krar (Ethiopia), endongo or ntongoli (Uganda), kibugander or litungu or nyatiti or obokano (Kenya) and litungu (Tanzania).
** Minor alterations might be present in the final instrument (regarding the colour or the kind of wood that was used for smaller parts) that you will receive in comparison with the images. For this reason, every instrument from the Luthieros team is undoubtedly unique. In case though you want the exact model that was photographed, please state it during the checkout!