The Role of Music in Wars and Different Kinds of Martial Musical Instruments in Islamic Era of Iran Regarding Miniature Paintings
Author(s):
Abstract:
Based on their own specific social requirements, all societies have made use of music on numerous and various occasions. Music has played a role in a wide range of social activities, including at prestigious events such as governmental receptions, court ceremonies and martial music, as well as during national and religious celebrations. The aim of this article is to examine martial musical instruments, solely looking at their applications in wartime. The overall method of this research is descriptive-analytic, and data have been gathered from library study. We therefore need to analyze martial musical instruments, as employed in warfare, from an iconographic viewpoint. The history of using music in warfare dates back to the pre-Islamic era, even though nowadays such usage has mostly been forgotten. The instruments employed on such occasions were either also used in different situations, or have since been rendered totally obsolete. Martial music is one of the most important applications of music which, in Iran, has played a significant role in wartime. The conclusion of this article is that martial musical instruments used to be played before the beginning of battles, to spread news, and to muster and move armies. One major sign of the beginning of a battle was the pounding of drums, which could be heard beating from both armies. Thus, the key use of martial musical instruments in battles was in encouraging and heartening warriors. Various pieces of martial music were played by these musical instruments before and during battles, as well as after achieving victory. Playing instruments such as “war drums”, “peace drums” and “return drums” bears testimony to the existing variety of beats which were used on a variety of occasions. Although the existence of a broad range of beats has been recorded, there is no information to hand as to how these beats used to be played. Throughout the history of Iran, the martial musical instruments which were used included Aerophones, Membranophones and idiophones. Chordophones, however, have played no special role in this field. In some miniature paintings, the Karna appears to be the most significant illustrated instrument. In these extant miniatures, the Karna can be classified into different types. The major differences in the appearance of Karnas hinge on their multipartite resonating tubes, their diameters, and the forms of their resonating tubes, diameters and the shapes of their bells. For instance, some types of bells were wide and trumpet-like, while some others were curved or skewed. The Sorna was also another instrument used in battle, yet it was not employed as widely as the Karna. Unlike the Karna, the Sorna was taken both to fetes and to combat. In existing miniatures, the Sorna has mostly been depicted in paintings of the game of Chovgan and in pictures of resorts. It appeared in battle scenes much less frequently. Another kind of drum that was extensively employed is the Naqareh, which is the most significant instrument in present illustrations. Two-headed drums, however, were seldom painted. Moreover, the cymbal, despite being the most important idiophone in battle, is rarely seen in existing miniatures.
Language:
Persian
Published:
Honar-Ha-Ye-Ziba: Honar-Ha-Ye Mosighi Va Namayeshi, No. 53, 2016
Pages:
65 - 76
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