Our prehistoric ancestors were very busy people, but they must have known how to chill in between chores, to relax and recharge. It’s well known to science that our cave dwelling forebears gorged on magic mushrooms and a host of other intoxicating plants. Meanwhile, a 60,000-year-old bear-bone flute discovered in Divje babe cave in Slovenia, demonstrates that the urge to make music and art emerged in deeply-ancient times. Now, a group of researchers studying two ancient deer antlers discovered in Vietnam think they were used to create musical instruments .
These 3,000-year-old deer antler instruments aren’t just simple wind instruments requiring air to make music, but complex stringed instruments with which prehistoric musicians could change pitch and make a range of advanced melodic sounds.
The artifacts are believed to have been used as deer antler instruments. In the image Artifact 1 is compared to other Vietnamese musical instruments such as the b) Bro JoRai, c) Co Ke and d) K’Ny. Source: F. Z. Campos / Antiquity
3,000-Year-Old Deer Antler Instruments: Introducing the Chordophone
The team of scientists comprised researchers from the Research School of Humanities & the Arts at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia, and the Long An Museum in southern Vietnam . Published in the journal Antiquity, their paper provides an in-depth look at two ancient deer antlers from “an archaeo-musicological perspective.”
The two antlers were found among a large collection of…