A bendir with snares
Hornbostel–Sachs classification211.3

The bendir (Arabic: بندير, bindīr; pl.: بنادير, binādīr) is a wooden-framed frame drum of North Africa and Southwest Asia.[1]

The bendir is a traditional instrument that is played throughout North Africa, as well as in Sufi ceremonies; it was played, too, in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia.[2] In Turkish, the word bendir means "a big hand frame drum".[citation needed]

Construction and play

A man playing the bendir in Laghouat, Algeria

The bandir often has a snare (usually made of gut) stretched across the head, which gives the tone a buzzing quality when the drum is struck with the fingers or palm. The drum is played in a vertical position. One holds the drum by looping the thumb of the non-dominant hand through a hole in the frame.

Similar frame drums include the tar of Egypt and the bodhrán of Ireland. Unlike the bendir, the tar does not have a snare on the back of the frame, and the bodhrán is played with a beater.[3]

See also


  1. ^ Raine-Reusch, Randy (2010). Play the World: The 101 World Instrument Primer. Pacific, MO.: Mel Bay Publications. p. 85. ISBN 978-1-61065-251-3.
  2. ^ "Bendir - History". Lark in the Morning. Retrieved 2017-12-27.
  3. ^ Éireann, Comhaltas Ceoltóirí. "Comhaltas: Bodhrán: its origin, meaning and history". Retrieved 2 January 2018.