MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS - online book

The History And Development Of Musical Instruments From The Earliest Times.

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MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS.
applying it to the lower lip and blowing into it a shrill sound is yielded. Three of these phalanges are of reindeer, one is of chamois. Again, among the relics which have been brought to lieht from the cave of Lombrive, in the department ot Anege, occur several eye-teeth of the dog which have a hole drilled into them near the root. Probably they also yield sounds like those reindeer bones, or like the tube of a key. Another whistle—or rather a pipe, for it has three finger-holes by means of which different tones could be produced—was found in a burying-place, dating from the stone period, in the vicinity of Poitiers in France : it is rudely constructed from a fragment of stag's-horn. It is blown at the end, like a. flute a bec, and the three finger-holes are placed equidistantly. Four distinct tones must have been easily obtainable on it: the lowest, when all the finger-holes were covered; the other three, by opening the finger-holes successively. From the character of the stone utensils and weapons discovered with this pipe it is conjectured that the burying-place from which it was exhumed dates from the latest time of the stone age. Therefore, however old it may be, it is a more recent contrivance than the reindeer-bone whistle from the cavern of the Dordogne.
The Ancient Egyptians.
The most ancient nations historically known possessed musical instruments which, though in acoustic construction greatly inferior to our own, exhibit a degree of perfection which could have been attained only after a long period of cultivation. Many tribes of the present day have not yet reached this stage of musical pro­gress.
As regards the instruments of the ancient Egyptians we now possess perhaps more detailed information than of those apper­taining to any other nation of antiquity. This info/mation we owe especially to the exactness with which the instruments are depicted in sculptures and paintings. Whoever has examined these interesting monuments with even ordinary care cannot but be convinced that the representations which they exhibit are
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