MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS - online book

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

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42
MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS.
symbolical figures, in four divisions, each containing nine mam­mals. The mouth was crescent-shaped. Every figure had a deep
meaning referring to the seasons and to the mysteries of the Buddhist religion. The largest hiuen-ichwig was about twenty inches in length ; and, like the te-tchung, was sounded by means of a small wooden mallet with an oval knob. None of the bells of this description had a clapper. It would, however, appear that the Chinese had at an early period some kind of bell provided with a wooden tongue: this was used for military purposes as well as for calling the people together when an imperial messenger promulgated his sovereign's commands. An expression of Confucius is recorded to the effect that he wished to be " A wooden-tongued bell of Heaven," i.e. a herald of heaven to pro­claim the divine purposes to the multitude.
The fang-hiang was a kind of wood-harmonicon. It contained sixteen wooden slabs of an oblong square shape, suspended in a wooden frame elegantly decorated. The slabs were arranged in two tiers, one above the other, and were all of equal length and breadth but differed in thickness. The tchoung-tou consisted of twelve slips of bamboo, and was used for beating time and for rhythmical purposes. The slips being banded together at one end could be expanded somewhat like a fan. The Chinese state that they used the tchoung-tou for writing upon before they invented paper.
The ou, of which we give a woodcut, likewise an ancient Chinese instrument of percussion and still in use, is made of wood in the shape of a crouching tiger. It is hollow, and along its back are about twenty small pieces of metal, pointed, and in appear-
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