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The chakhe is a traditional instrument from South East Asia usually associated with Thai or Khmer music. Originally, this instrument was made in the shape of a crocodile from which its name derives (Thai "chorakhe," meaning crocodile), but its form became more stylized. It is considered to be a floor zither, because it is played while resting on the floor, and it is made from a single piece of carved and hollowed out hardwood (resonator/head and neck/tail) covered in the bottom with a wooden panel. The bottom panel has a carved soundhole and three white plastic feet. There are eleven raised wooden frets (one missing) fixed with glue in a carved groove of the neck, and a higher carved nut/bridge. Three strings of twined fibers are attached to three friction pegs inside of the pegbox, and to a brass hook at the tailpiece section. A metal (brass) bridge might be missing from the instrument.

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  • Decorative elements:Carved foliage at the tailpiece section.
  • Inscriptions:Black Asian script characters painted on the resonator top.
  • Hornbostel-Sachs category:314.122 True board zithers with resonator box (box zither)
  • Repository:Powell-Cotton Museum
  • Measurements:Length: 1225mm; Height: 220mm; Width (at pegs): 345mm