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38.  Old Herold & Co. waldzither  (703)  @ 350 euros

Larger photos are available on request.

Old Herold Waldzither – Preston tuners

This is an old Waldzither, made in Germany in the early 1900s, with Preston tuners. It has a headstock label inscribed....

Herold & Co.

Klingenthall Sa.

It has the original rosewood finger-board with 17 re-levelled German silver frets. The spruce top is sound with no splits. The flat back is sound. The tuners, tail and bridge are originals. The instrument has been completely refinished with Tru-oil. It has been strung as a traditional waldzither in open C, and is now playing well with good volume and sustain, a trully, ringing, sonorous sound and a light action.

The waldzither will be supplied with a tuning key. A string winder is available for creating replacement double loop-end strings if required… @10 euros

Other than cleaning, I have carried out the following work on this instrument: 1) repaired a few dinks in the top; 2) levelled the neck and remounted the fingerboard; 3) replaced some missing edging pieces; 4) refinished throughout with Tru-oil; 5) re-levelled and dressed the original frets; 6) refitted the original bridge; and 7) strung and set up.

NB. the instrument can be retuned in a variety of different ways.

In the German region of Thüringen, the cittern seems to have existed in a time warp throughout the 17th and 18th Century. While citterns elsewhere went through a number of changes, the Thüringer remained very much the same. There were a number of variants with more strings, but the basic nine-stringed early 19th Century Thüringer Zither was very similar to the "standard" renaissance cittern. During the 19th Century the instrument became known as the Thüringer Waldzither and eventually the reference to Thüringen faded out and the instrument became known simply as the Waldzither, literally ‘forest cittern’. Around 1900 Hamburg mandolin manufacturer C. H. Böhm picked up the Waldzither idea and started manufacturing it in large quantities. For more about Waldzithers, follow these links…



Waldzither Specifications (In Millimetres)

Overall Length of waldzither


Width at widest point


Approx. Depth of waldzither

95mm at bridge.


Refinished throughout in Tru-oil.

Belly wood

Close-grained at centre, book-matched, spruce. A few small dinks, but no major repairs.

Sound hole

Round, approx. 65mm. diameter.




2-piece flat back in rosewood. No repairs.

Neck and Head

Single-piece, stained, neck and head, probably maple in fair condition. A few slight capo depressions.


Rosewood, perfect.


Original in rosewood. 17 re-levelled German silver frets. MOP position markers everywhere!!

Machine heads

Original steel Preston tuners, all working well.


Original in steel with 9 string posts and a strap post.


Original glass.

Scale Length Bridge to nut

Scale of 460mm

G string height at bridge


E string height at bridge


12th fret to bottom string (Action)


12th fret to top string (Action)


Width of fretboard at nut


Width of fretboard at widest point