The xylophone is a musical instrument in the percussion family. First introduced to the orchestra just over a century ago, the xylophone is a tuned instrument made of hardwood (usually rosewood) bars. These bars are varying lengths set on a metal frame, with the larger, lower-sounding bars on the left and the higher notes in the right. Striking the bars with hard mallets produces a bright, sharp sound. The xylophone was originally modeled after an African instrument and its name is Greek, meaning "wood sound".