The đàn đáy (Chữ Nôm: 彈𡌠)is a Vietnamese plucked lute with three strings, a trapezoidal wooden body, and a very long wooden neck with ten raised frets. Players formerly used silk strings, but since the late 20th century have generally used nylon.[1][2]

The man on the right is playing the đàn đáy during a Ca trù performance.
Old man holding a đàn đáy


Dan Day tuning.

It is used primarily in Northern Vietnam, and is one of the accompanying instruments used in ca trù.[3]

In the late 20th century, a modernized version of the electric bass guitar in the shape of the đàn đáy was developed for use in the neo-traditional music composed and performed at the Hanoi Conservatory. Unlike the đàn đáy, this instrument has a solid wooden body and metal strings, and without raised frets.


In the Vietnamese language, đàn is a classifier used primarily to refer to string instruments, and đáy means "bottom." Thus, the instrument's name translates literally as "bottom string instrument." However, the instrument's body has no back. According to one online source,[4] the instrument was originally called vô để cầm, literally "bottomless stringed instrument."

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "The Stringed Instrument Database". Archived from the original on 2011-12-18. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
  2. ^ Garland Encyclopedia of World Music "The đàn đáy is a long-necked three stringed lute"
  3. ^ The Garland Handbook of Southeast Asian Music - p. 262, Terry E. Miller, Sean Williams - 2008 "This lute is the only stringed instrument used to accompany ca trù singing."
  4. ^ "Vietsciences; science, khoa hoc, khoahoc, tin hoc, informatique; computer; vat ly; physics, physique, chimie, chemistry, hoa hoc, sinh vat, biologie, biology; biochimie; biochemistry; astronomy; astronomie; thien van hoc; gene; micrologie; micrology; microbiology". Retrieved 21 April 2021.

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