Erhu (China)

The Erhu is a two string Chinese version of a violin which dates back 6,000 years. It has a snake skin covering a small wooden body.
It is usually tuned D,A, just like the middle two strings of a violin... that is about where the similarities end. There is no fingerboard, so only the finger makes contact with the string. Another thing that makes the Erhu different from other bowed instruments is that the bow hairs go between the two strings... to play the lower string you push down with the bow, and for the higher string you pick up on the bow.
I have played this Erhu for several sound tracks including Van Dyke Park's "Broken Trail."