from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. An early form of viol, preceding the violin, the body of which was flat like that of a guitar. It had five strings, of which the two highest were usually tuned in unison.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
They divided into two classes -- the viol proper, with flat back and breast and indented sides, to which belonged the veille, videl, or as it has been called, guitar-fiddle, and the pear-shaped type, such as the gigue and rebec.