A mandolin is a stringed musical instrument in the lute family and is plucked with a plectrum. It has four courses of doubled metal strings tuned in unison, although five and six course versions exist; the courses are tuned in a succession of perfect fifths, with the same tuning as a violin. It is the soprano member of a family that includes the mandola, octave mandolin and mandobass. There are many styles of mandolin, but three are common, the Neapolitan or round-backed mandolin, the carved-top mandolin and the flat-backed mandolin; the round-back has a deep bottom, constructed of strips of wood, glued together into a bowl. The carved-top or arch-top mandolin has a much shallower, arched back, an arched top—both carved out of wood; the flat-backed mandolin uses thin sheets of wood for the body, braced on the inside for strength in a similar manner to a guitar. Each style of instrument is associated with particular forms of music. Neapolitan mandolins feature prominently in traditional music. Carved-top instruments are common in American folk music and bluegrass music.
Flat-backed instruments are used in Irish and Brazilian folk music. Some modern Brazilian instruments feature an extra fifth course tuned a fifth lower than the standard fourth course. Other mandolin varieties differ in the number of strings and include four-string models such as the Brescian and Cremonese, six-string types such as the Milanese and the Sicilian and 6 course instruments of 12 strings such as the Genoese. There has been a twelve-string type and an instrument with sixteen-strings. Much of mandolin development revolved around the soundboard. Pre-mandolin instruments were quiet instruments, strung with as many as six courses of gut strings, were plucked with the fingers or with a quill. However, modern instruments are louder—using four courses of metal strings, which exert more pressure than the gut strings; the modern soundboard is designed to withstand the pressure of metal strings that would break earlier instruments. The soundboard comes in many shapes—but round or teardrop-shaped, sometimes with scrolls or other projections.
There are one or more sound holes in the soundboard, either round, oval, or shaped like a calligraphic f. A round or oval sound hole may be bordered with decorative rosettes or purfling. See: History of the mandolin. Mandolins evolved from lute family instruments in Europe. Predecessors include the mandore or mandola in Italy during the 17th and 18th centuries. There were a variety of regional variants, but two that were widespread included the Neapolitan mandolin and the Lombardic mandolin; the Neapolitan style has spread worldwide. Mandolins have a body; the resonating body may be shaped as a box. Traditional Italian mandolins, such as the Neapolitan mandolin, meet the necked bowl description; the necked box instruments include the flatback mandolins. Strings run between mechanical tuning machines at the top of the neck to a tailpiece that anchors the other end of the strings; the strings pass over a floating bridge. The bridge is kept in contact with the soundboard by the downward pressure from the strings.
The neck is either flat or has a slight radius, is covered with a fingerboard with frets. The action of the strings on the bridge causes the soundboard to vibrate. Like any plucked instrument, mandolin notes decay to silence rather than sound out continuously as with a bowed note on a violin, mandolin notes decay faster than larger stringed instruments like the guitar; this encourages the use of tremolo to create sustained chords. The mandolin's paired strings facilitate this technique: the plectrum strikes each of a pair of strings alternately, providing a more full and continuous sound than a single string would. Various design variations and amplification techniques have been used to make mandolins comparable in volume with louder instruments and orchestras, including the creation of mandolin-banjo hybrid with the louder banjo, adding metal resonators to make a resonator mandolin, amplifying electric mandolins through amplifiers. A variety of different tunings are used. Courses of 2 adjacent strings are tuned in unison.
By far the most common tuning is the same as violin tuning, in scientific pitch notation G3–D4–A4–E5, or in Helmholtz pitch notation: g–d′–a′–e″. Fourth course: G3 third course: D4 second course: A4 first course: E5 Note that the numbers of Hz shown above assume a 440 Hz A, standard in most parts of the western world; some players use an A up to 10 Hz above or below a 440 outside the United States. Other tunings exist, including cross-tunings, in which the doubled string runs are tuned to different pitches. Additionally, guitarists may sometimes tune a mandolin to mimic a portion of the intervals on a standard guitar tuning to achieve familiar fretting patterns; the mandolin is the soprano member of the mandolin family, as the violin is the soprano member of the violin family. Like the violin, its scale length is about 13 inches. Modern American mandolins modelled after
Katona Nándor or Nathan Ferdinand Kleinberger was a Hungarian Jewish painter. One of seven children of a dismally poor Jewish family he was discovered as a prodigy, brought up and instructed in painting by László Mednyánszky, he studied in Budapest and Paris, traveled extensively throughout Western Europe. Most of his works depict scenes of nature from his home region, the Szepes county in particular views of the Tatra Mountains and the area of Késmárk, which he considered his home town despite having spent much of his life in Budapest, his works are on exhibit at the Hungarian National Gallery in Budapest, the Slovak National Gallery, the Eastern Slovak Gallery in Kassa and the Tatra Gallery in Poprad. Anna Ondrušeková Ferdinand Katona 1864–1932 publ. Tatranská Galéria, Poprad, 2004. Biography in Magyar Életrajzi Lexikon Works of art held in Slovak art collections
George Assaky was a Romanian physician. Born in Iași, he was the grandson of Gheorghe Asachi. After completing high school, he left for France in 1873. There, he enrolled in the medical faculty of Montpellier University; the following year, he transferred to the equivalent section of the University of Paris, from which he graduated. From 1875 to 1877, he worked in the embryology laboratory at the Collège de France, he returned home during the Romanian War of Independence, joining the ambulance service and caring for wounded soldiers. Assaky subsequently went back to France to continue his studies, in 1879 finished first at an examination for Parisian interns. From that year until 1882, he worked as a surgical intern in the French capital. Meanwhile, he wrote for a number of medical journals. In 1886, he defended; the same year, he obtained the title of aggregate professor. In early 1887, Assaky returned to Romania, being greeted at Bucharest North railway station by a large, enthusiastic group of medical students.
He had been offered a post as professor of clinical surgery within the University of Bucharest's medical faculty by the Liberal government. The fact that the job was offered without a competition irked fellow doctors, prompting the government to push a special law through parliament creating positions for Assaky, Victor Babeș and Nicolae Kalinderu; the law passed. Assaky went on to found a surgery institute at Filantropia Hospital, attended the International Medical Congress, held in Washington, D. C. in September 1887. He left Romania again around 1889, tired of certain colleagues' intrigue. For several years, he was aggregate professor at the University of Lille, he settled permanently in Bucharest in 1897 as director of the newly founded gynecology institute and professor of clinical gynecology. He died in the city two years at the height of his powers, aged 44. Assaky's contributions were in the fields of anatomy, embryology and gynecology, his work was cited in numerous treatises of medicine and surgery.
He was among the first Romanian surgeons to introduce modern principles of asepsis, antisepsis and a properly equipped operating room, as well as techniques of general surgery. His chief work, the doctoral thesis, received a prize from the Académie Nationale de Médecine. In 1886, he published research into the influence of mechanical conditions on nerve growth. In 1890, he was elected a corresponding member of the Romanian Academy