Military Music And Its Story - online book

The Rise & Development Of Military Music

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EARLY ENGLAND.                                    3
but signals appear to have been given upon the trumpet alone. In the many representations of their battles, we find that the trumpeter's post is generally at the head of his corps, and the drummer, when playing on the march, may be seen stationed in the centre of the column, or near the standard bearers. The trumpet and drum also combined in forming a band, when they marched in the van; and curiously enough there is a representation of some troops defiling past, with the band drawn upon one side, as is the custom in modern armies.
Returning to the Greeks, we find that the drum did not find favour with them for military purposes, the flute being their special marching instrument. For although they used the trumpet for signalling, and ./Elian tells us that one was appointed to each com­pany, they considered its tone too inspiring and likely to make the soldiers impetuous, whilst the soothing tones of the flute during the march and exercises kept the troops cool and firm.3
The Hebrews seemed to have relied specially upon the trumpet in their wars. There is a reference to it in that part of the so-called Mosaic ordinances, which is known as the " priests' code," collated about the fifth century before our era. The passage is—"And if ye go to war in your land against the enemy that oppresseth you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets, etc."
'"Tactics of ^Elian" (translated by Bingham, 1616).
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