Skip to main content
Ref ID: 36735
Ref Type: Book Section in a Series
Authors: Blench, Roger
Title: The history and distribution of the free-reed mouth-organ in Southeast Asia
Date: 2020
Source: EurASEAA14: papers from the Fourteenth International Conference of the European Association of Southeast Asian Archaeologists. Volume 1: ancient and living traditions
Place of Publication: Oxford
Publisher: Archaeopress
Abstract: One of the most distinctive musical instruments of the Southeast Asian area is the free-reed mouth-organ, best known as the Chinese shēng, and the origin of the European harmonica. It is also one of the few instruments for which there are extensive archaeological materials, as bronze skeuomorphs of gourd originals were made in China from at least the Dian period. In addition, some more classical instruments survive as grave goods in China, and the free-reed mouth-organ is often represented in mural art in Burma and Thailand. This paper proposes an organography of this instrument, showing how it evolved and diffused over time, bringing together archaeology, ethnography and iconography.
Identifier: ISBN 9781789695052
Editors: Lewis, Helen
Volume: 1
Page Start: 94
Page End: 110
Series Editor: Lewis, Helen