Arch lute

Description
This musical instrument was collected in Colombia before 1865. How it appeared there remains a mystery. It suggests the continuity of African musical traditions by enslaved people. Its form is typically West African. Musicological research suggests that this is a Mende arched harp (mbake) which originated from Sierra Leone.

(See Staub, J., 1936, Beitrage zur Kenntis der materiellen Kultur der Mendi in der Sierra Leone. Solothurn: Buchdruckerei Vogt-Schild A.G.)

Obtained by James Aunger, who donated it to RAMM in 1870.

Length = 843mm.
Accession Loan No.
E929
Simple Name
harp
Full Name
arched harp (mbake)
Common Name
arch lute
Production Country
Colombia
Material
wood; animal skin; metal; fibre
Collection Class
Musical instruments
Collection Contintent
America
Collection Area Region
S
Production Town
Cartagena, Colombia
Production County
Cartagena
Production Area Region
South America
Production Continent
Latin America and the Caribbean
Production Year High
1865
Cultural Group
Mende
Family Group

Function Name
musical instrument
Function Detail
West African instrument apparently acquired in Cartagena, Columbia
Dimensions
whole length 843 mm; whole W 207 mm; whole H 153 mm
Created At
2016-10-13 15:46:13
Updated At
2020-05-28 14:11:57

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