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the habit of playing before him in the evening. A similar custom prevailed also at the court of Jerusalem, at least in the time of David and Solomon; both of whom appear to have had their royal private bands, besides a large number of singers and instrumental performers of sacred music who were engaged in the Temple.
As regards the musical instruments of the Hebrews, we are from biblical records acquainted with the names of many of them; but representations to be trusted are still wanting, and it is chiefly from an examination of the ancient Egyptian and Assyrian instruments that we can conjecture almost to a certainty their construction and capabilities. From various indications, which it would be too circumstantial here to point out, we believe the Hebrews to have possessed the following instruments :
The Harp. There cannot be a doubt that the Hebrews possessed the harp, seeing that it was a common instrument among the Egyptians and Assyrians. But it is uncertain which of the Hebrew names of the stringed instruments occurring in the Bible really designates the harp.
The Dulcimer. Some writers on Hebrew music consider the nebel to have been a kind of dulcimer; others conjecture the same of the psanterin mentioned in the book of Daniel,—a name which appears to be synonymous with the psaiterion of the Greeks, and from which also the present oriental dulcimer, santir, may have been derived. Some of the instruments mentioned in the book of Daniel may have been synonymous with some which occur in other parts of the Bible under Hebrew names; the names given in Daniel being Chaldaean. The asor was a ten-stringed instrument played with a plectrum, and is supposed to have borne some resemblance to the nebel.
The Lyre. This instrument is represented on some Hebrew coins generally ascribed to Judas Maccabosus, who lived in the second century before the Christian era. There are several of them