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Material: WoodShape: SphericalGeneral Features: Hand-painted with Colourful designsApprox. Size: Height: 15 cm (5.90")Maracas (sometimes called rhumba shakers) are simple percussion instruments (idiophones), usually played in pairs, consisting of a dried gourd shell (cuia - kOO-ya) or coconut shell filled with seeds or dried beans. They may also be made of leather, wood, or plastic. Often one maraca is pitched high and the other low. The instrument is of prehistoric American origin. The word maraca is thought to have come from the Tupi language of Brazil, where it is pronounced: ma-ra-KAH. Although a simple instrument, the method of playing the maracas is not obvious. The seeds must travel some distance before they hit the leather, wood, or plastic, so the player must anticipate the rhythm.