The viola was invented in the sixteenth century and was more popular than the violin until the early seventeenth century.
In terms of range and color, the viola corresponds to the alto or a tenor singer.
Violas, despite their similar appearance, have a wider and longer body than violins.
The tone of a viola is smooth and velvety. The tones in the lower register sound dark and rich, while the upper register tones can be radiant and penetrating.
The viola is most commonly used in an orchestra to emphasize sections played by violins.