I'm not quite sure if this is the proper place to post this, but here goes. Throw me in the TB stocks if you think me to be treasonous, but... What is the purpose of the bass? Since its lowest note is tuned a minor 6th below that of a cello, what is its purpose? Why tuned in 4ths when all the other orchestral string instruments are tuned in 5ths? Was this a move to "free" up the cello, allowing it to play passages higher in their range? Why? Why? Why?