Short-necked Chinese lute. It has a pear-shaped body and a fretted fingerboard, and the silk strings are plucked with the fingernails. It is prominent in the opera orchestra and as an ensemble, solo, and accompanying instrument. The Japanese biwa is a similar instrument.

Variants of PIPA

pipa or p'i-p'a

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on pipa, visit Britannica.com.

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