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It belongs to flat type family of saz. It is considered as kanon, nuzha and tools of this kind. The main difference of santur from these instruments is its playing with two light wooden sticks(mizrab). Therefore, sentur is also onsidered to be a percussion musical instrument. According to the legend , prophet David  was the founder of a number of musical instruments, as well as of santur. R. Yektabey writes about santur: This is a very ancient musical instrument,and named in Torah as “psanterin. Santur word is its another form. 
Various types of flat sazs, mainly widespread in the countries of East and West. The most ancient and simple examples can be found among the peoples of Tuva and Khakasia. This type of instruments, in the Russians called as gusli,  in Belarussians  and Moldovans as simbal,  in Chuvashs as kyesli, in Tatars as quslya, in  Estonians as kannel, in Georgians as santuri,  in Uzbeks as  jang, etc. 2 types of santur are available in Ottoman turks- ı alafranqa and Turkish santur. In terms of structure, musical style, sound and other aspects these types of santur  are  very close to each other.
9 stretched diatonic santur presently  widely spread in the territory of South Azerbaijan, in Iran. 9 stretched means, of one side of the instrument. In fact, the instrument has 18 (9-9) stretches. Other types is of santur with 24 (12-12) stretches. This santur is related to the type of chromatic instruments. Big volume types of this instrument can be found in Iran – bam santurs.
Santur is like trapezium form wooden box in appearance. Instrument consists of frame, top and bottom wooden covers. All parts are made of selected wood species. Tuning pegs and string holders are made of metal. Sub-board is 7 mm., upper part is 5 mm thick whole boards. 12 stretched santur’s total length is 892 mm, width is 315 mm, height is 69 mm. Strings are made metal. 4 similar tuned strings passed through each stretches. The total number of strings is 96.
Santur is considered to be non-transposed instrument. Among the performers, the three types of instruments are used: the sol, lya and si tuned santus.
Diapason of 12 stretched santur is from big octave’s mi to the second octave’s lya # sound. Diapason of 9 stretched santur is from small octave’s mi  to the first octave’s re sound. 

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