Crude and Curious Inventions at the Centennial Exhibition





HITHERTO we have principally considered instruments of wood, bone, gourds, pebbles, shells, terra cotta, and the miscellaneous matters that are strung for necklaces and wristlets, — sea-shells, nutshells, hoofs and teeth of animals. As a relief to the tedium of these savage crudities we sketched the really interesting wood harmonicon, but must now turn again to the rude and noisy, giving our attention to the jingling and clashing instruments of metal, — cymbals, castanets, gongs, bells, — after which the topic of drums will conclude this branch of our subject.

Our cymbals came from China, and the Centennial exhibit of such instruments affords nothing specially new or interesting. It is the superiority of the Chinese alloy which has given the Orient this predominance, for the idea was by no means a new one in Europe when Chinese wares commenced to be known in the Mediterranean countries. over the cords which strain the goat-skinparchment heads. They are ten inches in diameter, and are intended to rest upon the withers of a horse and to be beaten with sticks.

Cymbals were used in ancient Egypt, Assyria, Palestine, Etruria, Greece, and Rome. They were particularly devoted by the Greeks to the worship of Cybele, Bacchus, and Juno. It may be reasonably assumed that they had their origin in the heroic dances such as those of the Persians in the time of Cyrus and Cambyses, when the movements were performed to the music of the flute, the actors dashing their crescent-shaped shields together, falling on one knee and rising. The Corybantian dance of Crete and Phrygia, and the Pyrrhic dance, were performed to the jarring music of clashing weapons.

Cymbals, triangles, trumpets, and drums are the instrumental accompaniment in the Buddhist temples of Ladak. The crescendo is accompanied by the roar of enormous trumpets stretched along the floor, the performers on which are in an adjoining room. Trumpets are to be considered with wind instruments in a subsequent article.

The loud-sounding and the high-sounding cymbals of Psalm cv. 5 were probably the clashing cymbals and rattling castanets. The latter were shown at the Centennial, but there was no great display. They do not differ substantially from one form of rattles, except in some of the more elegant shapes common among the Mediterranean nations and by them carried to the Americas, North and South. When made of metal they may be considered miniature cymbals, both valves being carried in one hand.

Copyright, 1877, by H. O. HOUGHTON & Co.

The suspended metallic bar beaten by an iron bâton is another inflection of the same idea; the quality of its tone depends on its material, its pitch upon its size and proportions. When bent to a three-sided shape it is called a triangle, from its figure; and as the ends are not united and it is suspended from one of the whole angles, its respective portions on each side of the string differ in length and consequently in tone. In Oriental countries, where din is the object, the hammering on the triangles is kept up as industriously as the pounding on the drums and the blowing on the clarinets.

For instance, loud noise, which seems to enter into all the ideas of grandeur among a barbarous people, was never omitted in the train of the Singhalese monarch. His progress was always attended by a number of performers on various instruments, such as tam-tams, drums of various kinds and sizes, shrill and squalling clarinets, pipes, flageolets, bagpipes, and pieces of brass and iron jingled by way of triangles. These were all sounded and clashed at once, without time or harmony, and accompanied by the cracking of long whip-lashes. The Siamese, more tasteful, use triangles in sets; this carries us back again to the pien-king, already considered.

Another jingler is an instrument more common formerly than now, but which was never wide - spread, geographically speaking. The ancient sistrum of Egypt, so common in museums, was unfortunately not in the Egyptian exhibit at the Centennial. It had a loop-shaped head with a number of loose wires, which were shaken to make a jingling noise. It was exported from Egypt to Greece, and used especially in the ceremonies of the worship of Cybele. Under the name of sanasil it is still used by the Christian priests of Abyssinia.

The Zambesi rattle of twenty-five degrees farther south, instead of wires on a loop-shaped head, consists of rings on a bar. This is certainly more musical than the buffalo horns beaten with sticks, used by the Bawe of the Zambesi as an accompaniment to the marimba.

We now come to the gong. This is a Malayan word, and the home of the instrument is around the China Sea and in the Malay archipelago. It may be called a tambourine - shaped resonant bell, being a thin bronze disk with an upturned edge forming a rim. Its composition is copper 78, tin 22, and it requires peculiar treatment in the manufacture, both in the hammering and the annealing. The tempering is the inverse of that adopted for iron. The bronze is of such proportions as to be naturally brittle when cast. It is heated to a cherry red, clamped between iron disks, and plunged into water till cool. It will then bear the hammer.

As was said of the cymbal, the Eastern gong was no new thing in Europe when reintroduced from China, but it was of much better material and made more noise. The ccs thermarum of the Roman bath was a suspended gong struck to notify the bathers when hot water was ready. It was sometimes shaped like a plate with a raised rim (gong), and sometimes like a fiat bell having a protuberant dome-sliaped centre (cymbal).

The Chiuese use gongs on occasions of ceremony, either religious or state, and they are supposed to yield a little more noise per pound of metal than any other

instrument. A small hand-gong which answers as a bell is saucer-shaped, five inches in diameter, in a ring of seven inches with a handle.

The variety of gongs in Japan is very great; the assortment at the Centennial was not large. The people of Zipango were too busy with bric-à-brac to assemble much material interesting to the machinist or ethnologist. There is hardly a size, shape, mode of hanging, or assembling in clusters that is not to be found there.

The Malay, Javanese, and Dyak gong is thick, with a broad rim, and gives a muffled sound of deep tone, very different from the clanging noise of the Chinese.

The gong is perhaps the most powerful and musical of all monotonous instruments. It is a favorite in Java, and is there used in various forms: suspended in horizontal position, singly (the henong or ketuk), in pairs, in sets of from ten to fourteen (the bonang or kromo) ; suspended by the edge, singly (kumpul) or in pairs (gong). In all these cases the gongs are beaten with mallets covered it is probably true, though not what we should have supposed from what is generally known of their scale, which is usually the pentatonic.

The circle of gongs of the Siamese (Figure 15) is there known as the râungwong (bonang of Java and Borneo), and consists of sixteen brass gongs arranged in a nearly complete ellipse around the female player who squats in the centre and strikes them with two mallets. The gongs are suspended on raw-hide strings which pass through their turned - over flanges and are secured to the frame so that the metal shall not touch the wood. They are tuned to the pentatonic scale, the sixth from the prime forming its octave, running regularly from one end of the series to the other, and vary in diameter from five inches at the treble

One traveler states that the bonang of Java is tuned to the diatonic scale, and with cloth or elastic gum. The two suspended gongs of a pair differ from each other by one note usually, but have been noticed tuned in thirds. Those in sets are tuned to a scale, and in the larger instruments contain two octaves. The gongs are from five to fifteen inches in diameter. These instruments are not played singly, but harmonize with the instrument on which the air is played. This is usually the rebab or two-stringed fiddle, which is known from the Mediterranean to the Banda Sea, and by its Persian name over a large portion of that area. end to seven inches at the bass. They are tuned by attaching balls of wax to them beneath, and are struck by mallets on the central boss.

The Burmese collection of gongs (kyezovp), like the Siamese, has them arranged in graduated sizes in a bamboo frame: eighteen in a set so far as noticed. In Ava also is found a similar circle of upright drums.

In Nusilant, one of the Spice Islands, near Amboina, the gongs are suspended in a frame of gaba-gaba, the dried midrib stalk of palm leaves. The small brass gong of Ceylon is suspended by a handle of coir fibre.

From metal to wood again; and yet what else but a gong are we to call the suspended plates of hard wood used in China on which to beat time? The wooden gong is used in that country to mark the intervals of religious services in temples; and a hollowed block of wood is struck with a piece of bamboo by the Chinese watchman to give an alarm. On it also the watchman beats the hours, the night being divided into five watches, beginning at seven P. M.

The African wooden gong used by the Niam-niams and Monbuttoos will be described when speaking of drums; also the similar instrument of the Fijians.

No great variety of bells coming within the purview of the present article was shown at the Centennial Exhibition.

The small bell, consisting of a hollow slit sphere with a ball inside, known to us as a sleigh-bell (French, grelot: German, schellen), was shown by several foreign countries, and is not particularly crude though it is ancient and widely disseminated. It is but the metallic form of a rattle, a hollow globe instead of a gourd or a wicker basket.

The little bells (garunongs) used as ear pendants by the Dyaks of Borneo are like the hawk bells of Europe, being bronze globes with a slit, and containing a small metallic ball. A number of these are worn in a cluster and make a pleasant jingling accompaniment to the dance.

The maraoueh of the Copts in Egypt is a disk which has a number of bells around its edges, and is attached to a long handle. It is used in religious ceremonies. The Japanese instrument (soezoew) consists of a number of these tiny bells attached to a handle. The religious use of bells is very ancient. The bells on the edge of Moses’ robe, the eighty little bronze bells with iron tongues found by Layard at Nimroud, and the bells of ancient Egypt now in European and American museums, testify how old the instrument is. It is used habitually throughout the lands which own Lahsa as their religious centre, and, with many other ceremonies, paraphernalia, and practices, the rosary, asceticism, penance, shaven crowns, etc., some here and some there, has been adopted into the Christian church from Archangel to Abyssinia and from the Caspian to the sea of Atlantis.

The jingling accompaniment of bells on the horses of the Assyrians, as shown in the sculptures, is probably a reminiscence or remainder of their former nomadic life. The “ bells on the horses ” are referred to by the prophet Zechariah. Bells on horses, cattle, sheep, and dogs are yet used, to prevent the straying of the animals, in Germany, Switzerland, Nubia, South Africa, and in America. The Niam-niams have bells of iron and of wood. The former are made of sheetiron bent into a form much like our own cow bells; the wooden bell is for the dog, and is attached to a strap round the neck. The origin of the bell can probably be better studied in Africa than elsewhere. The crude and incipient bells of that continent clearly show their origin from nuts and rattles, some of them yet retaining the shape of nuts even when made of sheet metal or of wood.

The Makalolo minstrel also jingles his native bells of sheet metal.

Casting is a much later invention than forging of metal, and the earliest eastings were probably of copper, unless lead or tin may have preceded it in countries where these white metals are abundant and accessible. The references to brass in the scripture translation should generally be rendered bronze ; brass is a much later alloy, and an accidental one originally. The bells mentioned in Leviticus were doubtless of bronze; the people had hut just left Egypt, where that alloy was common.

The native bronze bells of Peru and Mexico, made before the conquest, are cored castings of considerable merit. The Tezcucans had some kind of sonorous metallic object, gong or bell, which was struck by a mallet, and gave the summons to prayer. The Peruvians had copper hand-bells, and also the spherical horse bells called by them yotl. Bells were hung in the palaces of the old Singhalese kings, and bell-metal is among the gifts recorded on the rock of Pollanuara, A. D. 1187.

The ancient bell of China had nine nipples or small protuberances, represeating the nine provinces of the Celestial Flowery Kingdom, each of which was supposed to contribute. The ancient bells were sometimes round, with a continuous rim, and sometimes quadrangular or flattened, and with the rim deeply scalloped on both sides, Chinese bells have no clappers, but are struck by a muffled hammer. They say “ strike the bell, not “ ring ” it. Their bells are struck by hand to announce the hours, as they have no striking clocks.

The Chinese idea of suspending metallic plates in a row from a frame, the plates being tuned to give a regular succession of tones, has been already referred to. It is but a step to the instrument in which bells are similarly arranged. Carillons of attuned bells have long been used in Burmah and China. One was shown to Lord Macartney, in Pekin, and they have since become very common in Europe and America.

Drums were in great force at the Exhibition, especially from Asia and Africa. The taste of the American savage does not run so much to drums as that of the African.

The great signal and alarm drum of the principal court of the Niam-niam chief, at the head waters of the Nile, is called the manyunjee, and is a hollowed trunk of wood mounted on feet. The same is used by the Monbuttoos, a little farther south, on the Welle River, a tributary, it is supposed of the Congo. This canoeshaped gong has sides of unequal thickness, and gives out a different note according to the side on which it is struck; thus signals for war, hunting, or a festival are given, and, being repeated by the drums of a district, an assemblage is collected at short notice. None of the largest drums from Central Africa were shown at the Exhibition; but one of a different construction and more portable was brought by Colonel Long, of the Egyptian army, from an expedition into Darfoor, and was sent to Philadelphia. It is known as a clincufo, and is shown in Figure 16. It is thirty by twenty-four inches in size and made of a carefully hollowed slab of light, sonorous wood. It approximates a semicircular shape, is flat, and has a handle on top to carry it by. It may be compared to a flattened wooden bell. Its greatest thickness is four inches, and it becomes thinner toward the mouth. It is hollowed out of a solid block, the wood being left about half an inch thick, the opening one inch wide. It is carried by a belt from the neck, but when beaten is held in one hand and struck with a padded mallet, as a bass accompaniment to other instruments.

A drum of similar construction to the manyunjee is made in the Fiji Islands of Polynesia, one hundred and fifty degrees east of Darfoor. The race of cannibals inhabiting this group is the most ingenious of the whole Polynesian archipelago. Their wooden drum is made from a hollowed log of hard and resonant wood. That observed by the writer was heavy and of a dark color, almost like rosewood. It was five feet long and trough-shaped, the wood near the ends being left unhewn so as to stiffen the sides. The wood at the sides was two inches thick, and the opening was ten inches across and forty-eight inches long. A large bamboo is sometimes used for this purpose, the natural septum of the stalk being allowed to remain, and the length of the drum being the distance between the joints. The New Zealanders have also a suspended sonorous log, six feet long and two feet thick, with a deep groove in it. It is beaten with hard wood mallets.

Passing to Western Africa we find the drum in full feather, but assuming the more usual type, a membrane of skin upon a wooden body. The drums in this fearful country are for different purposes: ceremony, war, amusement. The largest of all are, perhaps, the death drums of Dahomey, which are four in number, of different sizes. The largest is nine feet four inches in length, and the whole of them are ornamented with the skulls of enemies of distinguished reputation. In the charges of the Dahomey Amazons, one carries the drum on her head and another follows beating the drum-head violently with two sticks.

long, is hollowed out of one log of wood, and is painted black all over, excepting the leopard with its prey in its month, — a common fetich of the natives. It is about eight inches in diameter at its larger end, and tapers down to about three inches at the smaller end, which rests on two wheels. The carved figures are of one piece with the remainder of the body. The goat-skins over both ends are tied together and made tight with rawhide strings. The handle by which it is drawn is in front of the fetich, and the instrument is dragged along the ground at the left of the drummer, while he beats upon it vigorously with a stick in his right hand.

The fetich drum of Angola, shown The idea of putting the skull of an enemy on a drum is that he shall tremble in terror whenever it is beaten.

The Angola drum, shown at Figure 17, and which was a part of the Portuguese colonies exhibit in the Agricultural Building at the Centennial, had been kindly shorn of its ornamental skulls before being sent across the Atlantic. One in the British Museum bus yet its girdle of human jaw-bones. Figure 17 apparently belongs to what a learned casuist called “the long and thin sheep-headed tom-tom party.” This drum is five feet in Figure 18, is carved from a single block of light-colored wood; it is about, twentytwo inches high, and has a parchment cover secured by wooden pins, the membrane being evidently placed on while wet and then secured. It is perhaps not too much to assume that the animal is a grotesque imitation of the hippopotamus. The Ashantee fetich drum used in the sacrifice of human beings at the annual “ customs ” of Dahomey, is similarly carved. The antelope furnishes the ordinary drum skin of Africa, but for powerful “fetich” snake or crocodile skin is used.

One fan drum was noticed to have been made of an elephant’s ear!

The problem of drum-making in tropical and semi-tropical countries, the materials at hand being very similar, is a simple one to state: given a block of wood naturally or artificially hollowed, or a gourd with a slice off the side; how to stretch a skin tightly over the opening so as to give a musical sound when struck? A number of illustrations of different methods of securing the membrane to the barrel or calabash were furnished at the Centennial and will be given.

A drum of Angola, used standing upon the ground and beaten with the hands, is shown in Figure 19. The hollowed wooden body is covered in part with calfskin, and has a goatskin parchment head secured with strings. The parchment head is laced to the calf-skin, and the latter is tied to the contracted portion of the body. The drum of the Bongos of the Upper Nile is made from a section of a stem of the tamarind-tree hollowed into a cylinder; it is larger at one end than the other to give a difference of note when struck at the respective ends. The ends are covered with two pieces of goat-skin stripped of the hair and tightly strained and laced with thongs.

A fire is invariably kept burning at their nightly festivals to dry the skin when it is relaxed by the dews and restore the tone.

The kettle-drum of the same region is shown in Figure 20. It is suspended by a leathern thong around the neck. The parchment head has strings of rawhide which are fastened at the back of the wooden body and stretched by cross-strings. Like most of the small drums of its class it is beaten with the fingers. The hand drum of Zanzibar is a hollow cylinder of Wood, twelve inches in diameter and fifteen Egyptian Exhibit. inches long, the single head covered with the dry skin of a serpent. The open end of the cylinder is held against the breast and the head tapped with the fingers.

Crossing westward from Zanzibar nearly to the other side of Africa, only about three thousand miles, we find a drum made like that from Darfoor. The one pictured in Figure 21. however, is from one of the English dependencies, and was shown in the exhibit from the Gold Coast of Guinea. The specimen belongs to the British Museum. It has a hollow wooden body and a goatskin head, fastened by rawhide strings to blocks upon the back, and tightened with wedges driven under the strings. The head of the drum is nine inches in diameter, and the drumsticks are of rawhide. The neck baud is of native manufacture, and is woven cotton stuff, subsequently dyed with a blue bar-and-diamond pattern and sewed up into a roll.

A standing drum of the Gold Coast is shown in Figure 22. It is made of a block of wood hollowed out; the shape and carving are very interesting as showing the succession of inventions and persistence of ideas. It is evidently an imitation of basket work. In a future article we shall be enabled to adduce instances from exhibits at the Centennial to illustrate the fact that wicker work preceded pottery and wooden ware. When a tribe familiar with basket-making proceeds to mold in clay, the basket is frequently taken for the mold in which to form the vessel, and the latter, when it is baked, retains the impression of the twigs. This appearance becomes conventional, and after the clay moldcr has outlived the necessity for a basket mold and acquires skill enough to mold the vessel by spatula and hand, or to use the wheel, he imitates the basket work of the incipient invention because that style, which has become one of ornamentation merely, is looked for to add grace and finish to the earthenware. So also of the wooden drum in question (Figure 22) and of a number of Kafir vessels which we shall consider in a future article, the conventional ornamentation must be actually carved upon the vessel in obedience to the taste of the people, although probably they may have long outlived any remembrance of the old process by which the peculiar appearance was originally given.

The hollowed wooden body of the drum (Figure 22) is covered with a snake-skin head four inches in diameter. The drum is eight inches high, and is apparently intended to be held between the knees in playing. It is vase-shaped, and from its shoulders rise five pegs to which the hoop of the head is stretched by grass or hark strings. The drum-

stick (Figure 23) belongs to this drum and is of peculiar form. The pad is a piece of parchment stretched over the hollowed end of the stick.

The membranes of all the drums mentioned are of rawhide or parchment, leather being almost unknown in Africa, besides which its sonorous power is much inferior to the untanned hide. Madagascar, so famous for fat cattle, has not had the art of tanning for more than about fifty years, and the various soft processes of tawing and rubbing with grease and brains are far more widely known and practiced among savage nations than any process of steeping in infusions of astringent bark. In Madagascar the drum is made of the hollow trunk of a tree covered with untanned ox-hide, the ends being drawn together by thongs of the same material.

The mode of straining the drum-head by thongs is not, however, by anv means universal, the practice of pegging or riveting the skin to the body being very generally known. Figure 24 is a hand drum of Angola on the western coast of Africa, and Figure 25 ) is from Malaysia. The

Angola drum has a wooden body with a goat-skin head fastened by wooden pins; it is made tight by securing it while stretched and wet, and its tone must depend upon the hygrometric condition of the atmosphere. That may be supposed to matter little as it makes a noise, and it can be dried by the fire to tighten it.

The Balonda tribe, inhabiting a country north of Angola and Congo, on the west coast, have a similar method. The drum body is neatly carved from a trunk of a tree and the antelope skin is pegged On. One Curious additional feature is found in the Balonda drum, namely, a square hole in the side, closed with a piece of spider’s web taken from the egg ease of a certain species of arachnidæ.

The Karagooes of the far interior of Africa, a little south of the equator, make a drum four feet long and one foot in diameter, covered with ichneumon skin. It is slung from the shoulders and played by the fingers. The drums for new-moon occasions and war alarms are much larger.

The Malay drum, klaung-käak (Figure 25), shown in the Siamese exhibit, has two heads, each twenty-four inches in diameter, which are strained over the ends and secured with rivets.

It is certain, from the bas-reliefs uncovered by Layard, that the heads of the Assyrian drums were secured to the bodies by rivets. They had, however, but one head and were beaten by the hands, in these particulars resembling existing forms in Asia. Their shapes were cylindrical and conoidal; they were carried in front of the person, head upward.

China showed a large variety of small drums and tam-tams, the mode of securing the heads being by rivets. They were from six to fifteen inches in diameter, and the heads in some eases bore no relation to the size of the body; in some instances the portion of head concerned in the vibration was not over two inches in diameter, and the sound was almost as sharp as that produced by rappingtwo ordinary lead-pencils together. The larger one of the two shown in Figure 26 has two pig-skin heads on a wooden body, on which the heads are shrunk and tacked. The smaller one has an almost solid body and but a single head, which gives the sharp sound referred to.

One curious feature is noticeable in the drum of the South African bushman. The instrument is known as the water-drum, and consists of a wooden bowl with a skin tightly stretched over it; a little water is previously poured into the bowl to keep the skin damp. It is beaten by one finger and kept at a proper pitch by the thumb and fore-finger of the left hand.

The whole tropical region of the eastern hemisphere is full of drums of the same varieties. The similarity of types over a belt of one hundred and fifty degrees of longitude would be remarkable but that the problem is, as has been said, really not a complicated one, the choice of material being somewhat uniform and the conditions of efficiency really simple.

While there are few drums in Asia or Malaysia as large as some of the African instruments, the smaller kinds may be said to extend from Senegal to Papua. The kinds used in India and Ceylon may be taken as a sample and will be stated seriatim, those of these countries being selected because they have codified the subject and given distinct names to those of different classes. The drums of uncodified Africa may be readily remitted to the same groups, so far as they are referable to Asiatic types.

The drums of India are various in shape and material, — cylinders, cones, bowls, spindles, plates. Those of Ceylon may be said to be large, small, kettles, cylinders, long, narrow, bulging, hourglass-shaped. That most of these forms are not new is clearly proved by the Egyptian, Assyrian, and Indian monuments. The bas-reliefs of the Sanchi tope at Bhilsa, in Central India (A. D. 17), show drums of cylindrical shape to be suspended horizontally and beaten at both ends (Figure 27), suspended obliquely and beaten at one end (Figure 28), and kettle - drums to be played with sticks (Figure 29). These illustrations are from Siam, the Gold Coast of Africa, and from Hindostan, respectively.

The drum suspended from the neck and beaten by the hands at both ends is known in India as the dhak; in Ceylon as the verri or verrigodea ; in Siam as the ta-pohn. The illustration (Figure 27) is of the latter. It has a wooden body with parchment heads; the latter usually has hoops which are strained with rattan strings. The ta-pohn is two feet long, and is slung by a couple of staples and a strap from the neck of the performer, who plays upon it with both hands. The drum made of jack - wood and deer-skin and beaten with a stick at one end and a hand at the other is the doula or daelle of Ceylon. A similarly played instrument, but with a body of earthenware, is the kara of India.

The drum held in the left hand and beaten with the right is the ou-daelle of Ceylon, and is commonly called the armdrum by travelers in Africa, as it is often carried under the left arm while beaten by the right hand. Figure 28 illustrates one from the Gold Coast of Africa. It is made from a solid block of wood hollowed out. The skin heads are connected by stretching strings that are tightened by a band tied around the waist of the drum, which is shown as standing on the ground and in position as used.

The small kettle-drums used in pairs are frequently of earthenware in India, and called tikara, the tamtam or tamaton of Ceylon. The Indian kettle-drum is shown in Fig-

ure 29. It has a wooden body and parchment. head, with hoops and straps.

The Javanese drums are standing (ketipung) or prone (kendang), and are played with the hands and fingers only.

One drum of Siam is a baked earthen vessel, open at one end and covered with sheep-skin at the other.

The Arabian darabooka, also used throughout Egypt and Syria, is a small drum on a hollow stem which serves as a handle. It is almost exactly the shape of a printer’s oldfashioned inking-pad. The head is fish, snake, or lizard skin. The small end is open, the body of earthenware or wood.

The African calabash drum (Figure 30) is made upon a gourd of the largest size, being about twenty inches in diameter; the goat-skin is stretched with rawhide strings passing to a ring at the back. It is very sonorous and is played with sticks of stiff hide, probably from the rhinoceros. The hide of this pachyderm is used for whips and shields, and a number of the former were exhibited by the Orange Free State.

The most interesting drums exhibited by Egypt were those from the Upper Nile, the country recently penetrated by the troops of the Khedive, under Sir Samuel Baker, Colonel Long, and others. That shown in Figure 31 is one of her own, cruder

than those used at head - quarters, no doubt, where French models are adopted. The Egyptian drums are of several kinds, as might be expected: tam - tams, tambourines, kettle-drums, and cylindrical, with one or with two heads. The sizes exhibited were from eight to thirty inches in diameter. The kettle-drums have copper bowls.

The klaung, or standing drum of Siam (Figure 32), has heads fastened to hoops which are strained by cords that draw them toward each other. The hoops project beyond the face so as to rest upon the ground when either head is down and preserve the parchment head from contact with the soil. They are about twelve inches in diameter and thirty inches in length. The heads being of different diameters give different tones.

Somewhat the same construction is shown in the Japanese drum (Figure 33), but in the latter the central post against whose ends the parchment heads are strained bears a very small proportion diametrically to the size of the heads themselves. The drum is shown standing, but is intended to be slung by a belt from the neck. The heads are strained by cords which pass around both hoops, and are tightened by a circumferential band. As the ends of the posts are of different sizes the heads give different tones, the extent of surface of the respective parchments concerned in the vibration varying. The two are assumed to have equal tension, as they are tied together.

The Chinese standing drum shown in the Mineral Annex of the Main Building has the same general features as the Japanese drum just noticed, but its proportions are different. It is about three feet high, so as to be convenient for a standing player. The body is of wood handsomely japanned, and the heads are of pigskin. The skin at either end is stretched over a hoop which extends outside of the body of the drum, and is held by cords connecting the heads. The skin is stretched and the tone raised by a cincture tied around the cords, and also by knots, in the manner usual with our own drums.

The Japanese table drum (tsutsumi, “ a drum beaten with sticks ”) is fifteen inches in diameter and suspended from three arms on a stand, It has two parchment heads, a lacquered body, and the heads are strained with crimson cords. Either side may be turned up.

Kettle-drums in pairs were shown at the Exhibition, from Turkey and Tunis. The Turkish drums have copper bowls, and the parchment heads are strained by rawhide thongs to rings at the back. They are tied together so as to be thrown across the withers of a horse.

The kettle-drums of Tunis (Figure 37) have also metallic bowls which are hidden by a calf-skin covering sewed on

The Chinese kettle-drum is of wood, rests on three legs, and is covered with pig-skin.

There is a point at which the drum ends and the gong begins, or conversely; the Japanese seem to have discovered it. Figure 38 shows a gong mounted on a barrel shaped body, or it is a drum with a metallic head. It was the most gorgeous of its class at the Exhibition, and is suspended within a handsomely lacquered frame by means of a ring and hook. It is twenty-four inches in diameter, gaudily and grotesquely painted.

The Chinese name for the large drum elevated on a frame so as to be struck overhand by drumsticks is kin-kou; the latter portion of the compound word means simply “ drum.”

We have had occasion previously to notice several instruments in which pieces or parts, each one giving its own distinct and unalterable sound, were associated to form an instrument with a regular succession of tones. These are gongs, and harmonicons of wood, stone, metal, and glass. Drums are similarly arranged in sizes. The Burmese have a collection of oblong drums (bowndaw) varying in size and suspended perpendicularly in a wooden frame by leathern strings. The frame is circular, five feet in diameter and four feet high. The performer stands in the centre and beats on the drums with a small stick or with the hands. It is used in full band and in processions.

It is not singular, with their great use of drums, that African tribes should have conceived the same idea. The Latookas, a tribe of the Nile, arrange their drums in sizes so as to play a sort of tune.

Whether the Tahitians also use their drums in the same way we are not informed. They have them of various sizes, all cylindrical, and long in proportion to their diameter. They are beaten with the fingers only.

The New Zealanders, of all Polynesia, have no drums as the word is generally understood, that is, no drums of membrane. They have, however, the suspended wooden cylinder before referred to; it is not exactly cylindrical, but has a deep groove, making a sort of trough, which is suspended mouth downward and horizontally by cords of the New Zealand flax (phormium tenax). It is beaten with a hard wood mallet by a man who squats upon a scaffold beneath it, and is sounded at night within the pah, or stockaded village, as a sort of watchman’s alarm, to inform the villagers that he is awake and to notify prowling enemies that the guard is set. As the drum, so to call it, is made of a log six feet long and two feet thick, and the man is not sparing of his blows, it may be heard for several miles.

The only musical instrument of the Andamaner is a large red wooden board, supposed by Mouat to be a shield till he observed a captive native of the island standing on one foot and using the other as a drumstick upon the wooden gong, accompanying it with a howl. The gins (Australian women) beat time with the palms of their hands upon kangaroo skins doubled up into balls.

A much more recondite form of wooden drum, called tchou, is made in China. It is shaped like a flaring square box, the open side upward. It is made of a sonorous coniferous wood and stands on feet. The mallet, or tongue, is on a vertical post inside and is swung back and forth by the hand, which is introduced through a hole in the side of the box. It is really an inverted wooden bell, and forms a connecting link between the wooden gongs of the Niam-niams, Fijians, and Maori and the true bell.

In China a hollowed block of wood is struck, by the watchman with a piece of bamboo to give an alarm or announce the hours, by the priests in the temple to mark the intervals of the religious services, and by musicians to beat time.

At the risk of furnishing the advocates of the settlement of America from Asia with another argument, it may be mentioned that the Mexican teponaztli was a wooden drum like those of Africa and Polynesia, — with a difference, — and was used in religious observances like the Asiatic gong just mentioned. It differed in this, that, instead of a mere hollowing of the log, a sound board was left on the upper side, and this having two slits longitudinally and one across, two vibratory tongues were left, of unequal length and giving out two distinct tones ns they were beaten respectively. The appearance of the slits was a much-elongated letter H laid flat, m. This was a great refinement upon the mere pounding on a log hollowed naturally or artificially; the bottom of the log had a large square opening. These instruments were made of various sizes, small enough to be suspended from the neck, and large and powerful enough to be heard at a distance of three miles. An instrument of this kind has been noticed lately by a traveler in the Tierra Templada of the Cordilleras. That mere wooden gongs should be found in distant places where good timber is abundant is not surprising. Hollow logs are to be found in all woods, and the people must have perforce noticed that a shell of sound wood was sonorous when struck, and that some kinds gave a more ringing and musical tone than others.

While speaking of Mexico it may be said that the ordinary drum of the Aztecs was cylindrical and had a deer-skin head, which was tightened by cords and knots as usual with us. It was beaten with the fingers. Bernal Diaz ascended the Teocalli in company with Cortez and relates that he saw the drums covered with the skins of great serpents. It does not exactly appear whether in the widespread use of snake-skin for this purpose there is merely the peculiarly good quality of the ophidian hide, or whether the “fetich” idea does not predominate. Serpent worship is all but universal in certain stages of civilization, and serpent myths are to be met with, as one may say, at every step.

Oviedo states that the Indians in Cuba had drums with human-skin tympani. Now and then this has occurred, and among tribes who preserve portions of their enemies it should seem to be about as convenient a method as any. The savage seems to appreciate the idea of thumping the skin of his foe after having eaten his flesh, perhaps, and of blowing into a flute made of his femur, and of using the phalanx hones of his hands as a rattle, or the extreme joints of his fingers and toes with nails attached as a necklace, as in the Cape of Good Hope exhibit at the Centennial.

The word “ drum ” does not occur in the authorized version of the Bible, but the Hebrew toph was the name of a small drum or tambourine, probably like the Arab darabooka, the derbekkeh of modern Syria. Fortunately we are not left in doubt as to the musical instruments of ancient Egypt and Assyria, for the monuments show them clearly, at least those of the drum class. Some of the wind and stringed instruments are not so clearly defined. With the pictures of the drums before us, or in our minds, we have only to turn our eyes to modern Syria, Egypt, India, Ceylon, or Java to find the precise counterparts of the instruments of thirty centuries since. Even the Hebrew name toph Seems to have survived in the doff of the Arabs, a small hand drum of probably similar character.

As no classification is absolute, we find it difficult at times to say where a drum ends and a tambourine begins, or perhaps it should be stated conversely, as the tambourine is the simpler and more primitive instrument.

The American Indians are far behind the Asiatics and Africans in their drums and tam-tams. Figure 39 is a drum of the Hoopah Indians of California. It has a square frame over which are stretched two dog or wolf skins divested of their hair and sewed together on the edge of the frame. It is the accompaniment of their dances and of the powwows of their medicine men. The stick does not belong to this actual drum, but is one made by the Kolosh Indians of Alaska.

It is used, however, in a similar manner.

What are popularly called drums in the descriptions of the North American ceremonial and war dances are properly tambourines, having narrow hoops of relatively large diameter and but a single bead. The latter are made of such material as may be readily obtained: of antelope skin in temperate climes, of dogskin farther north. The best sounding instrument with which the author is acquainted is a tambourine of the Unaleet Eskimo of Norton Sound; the head of this is made from the intestine of a white whale. Like many others of its class it has a handle projecting outward from the hoop. The drum of the Yucca Indians of Sonora is a buffalo - calf skin stretched in a wooden hoop and tightened by cords. It has but one head.

The rattle drum of China and elsewhere is a toy used in many parts of the Orient and in fact nearer home. It is shown in Figure 40. Being held in the hand it is so rotated that the little balls swing outward aud then strike the heads as the direction of motion is changed. A similar one from Soudan in Africa was shown in the Egyptian exhibit; it had glass beads at the ends of the cords. The Japanese rattle drum has a duplicate barrel, one upon the other, so that the heads face in four directions. Each has its pendant balls; the sound thereby is doubled, which is just so much gained.

Tambourines were in force at the Centennial, from the African desert, the various countries of the Mediterranean, and from India. The same idea seems to obtain generally. The East Indian, however, has no little jingles; the Turkish has one circle of them, the Tunisian, two. There are great differences of size, the Turkish and Tunisian being nine inches in diameter, the Hindoo double that size. The Chinese tambourines are of various sizes and forms, the one shown being an octagon eight inches in diameter, with jingling plates in seven of its sides. The cover is snake-skin. In the Barbary States a square tambourine ((doff or deff) is employed. A parchment of sheep-skin is distended on a square frame and four gut cords are stretched over the inside and increase the vibration.

From Miriam to Sambo the instrument has held its way among peoples that care mainly for rhythmical beats, for much sound irrespective of quality, for an adjunct to the dance rather than an accompaniment to the song. Some idea of the kind of music Nebuchadnezzar engaged, to give the signal for all to fall down and worship his golden image, may be formed from the Assyrian monuments. It could not have been as loud as the African taste, for the drums were small, and it is to be presumed that the tambourines, trumpets, bells, sistra, and cymbals were not allowed utterly to drown the various stringed instruments, — the harps, lyres, guitars, and dulcimers, — which formed so large a part of the band.

Edward H. Knight.