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1890 Historical 5-String Rajao

 
 

Considered one of the parent instruments of the ukulele, the ukulele is believed to have received its current tuning of G-C-E-A from the Rajao, which is tuned D-G-C-E-A. To my knowledge there are only a few examples of these early historical instruments in existence that have been made in Hawaii.

This extremely rare 1890 Historical 5-String Rajao is a world class collectable over 100 years in age. The instrument originated on the island of Madeira, Portugal and was likely handcrafted by one of three Portuguese cabinet makers (Jose do Espirito Santo, Augusto Dias, and Manual Nunes) who first came to Hawaii in the late 1800s; and, in turn, were credited with the invention of the ukulele.

A very serious collectible piece which many museums have never seen. The back and sides were handcrafted of what appears to be a wood in the rosewood family but I am not quite sure. The soundboard is handcrafted of old growth spruce. It’s very light and there have been some repairs to the body etc. All in all, it’s an amazing historical piece with a very unique tone and personality all its own.

Price: NOT FOR SALE

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