It’s such a fun name to say. This instrument existed all over Europe since the Middle Ages and is depicted in many works of art. The musician plays the hurdy gurdy by turning a crank which rotates a wheel that in turn rubs the strings to create the sound. It’s similar to the way a violin bow creates vibrations on the violin. Various pitches are made through the use of keys played by the left had. It’s rather like a violin/piano, though it really has a unique sound all it’s own.