HESH-8D70E0: Post Medieval: Jews Harp

Rights Holder: Birmingham Museums Trust
CC License:


Image use policy

Our images can be used under a CC BY attribution licence (unless stated otherwise).

JEWS HARP

Unique ID: HESH-8D70E0

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Awaiting validation Find awaiting validation

An incomplete and misshapen cast copper alloy Jews harp of probable post-Medieval date (c. 1500-c. 1800). The lyre-shaped instrument is fragmentary and only one side element / arm survives. Originally it would have been symmetrical in plan; with a sub-circular head and tapering arms which are characteristically lozenge-shaped in cross-section.

The fragment measures 58.2mm length, 9.9mm width, is 6.6mm thick and weighs 6.68 grams

Taken from a record on Jew Harps by Frank Basford
Geoff Egan of The Museum of London has commented on Medieval jews harps: The jews harp, or trump, is an ancient folk instrument with a wide geographical distribution. It is indigenous to South-east Asia, and was certainly introduced to Europe by the time of the Crusades…The European jews harp, familiar today, is made of metal, usually iron, and the tongue is a separate component hammered into a rabbet in the thickest part of the frame. At its other end the tongue is bent into a prong, but this rarely survives in archaeological contexts. In play, the instrument is held in one hand and the frame is lightly supported between the player’s teeth, while the metal tongue is plucked with the fingers on the other hand. The mouth cavity acts as a resonator and the pitch is modified by the position of the lips, tongue and cheeks (Egan, G. 1998.”The Medieval Household Daily Living c. 1150 - c. 1450”. 284. London: The Stationery Office. Similar examples are illustrated in Bailey, G, 1993, ‘Detector Finds 2’, 76-7, refs. 4-6. Bailey (page 76) suggests that these examples date to the eighteenth century. See also: Elliston-Erwood, F. C. 1944. "Notes on Bronze Objects from Shooters Hill, Kent and Elsewhere and on the Antiquity of the Jew's Harp". Archaeologia Cantiana. 34-40. Kent Archaeological Society.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder

Chronology

Broad period: POST MEDIEVAL
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1500
Date to: Circa AD 1800

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 58.2 mm
Width: 9.9 mm
Thickness: 6.6 mm
Weight: 6.68 g

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Peter Reavill
Identified by: Mr Peter Reavill
Secondary identifier: Mr Frank Basford

Other reference numbers

Other reference: C 5

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Incomplete

Spatial metadata

Region: West Midlands (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)
District: Shropshire (Unitary Authority)
To be known as: Uffington

Spatial coordinates


Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 100 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land

References cited

No references cited so far.

Similar objects

Find number: HESH-5CBCB6
Object type: JEWS HARP
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
An incomplete and misshapen cast copper alloy Jews harp of probable post-Medieval date (c. 1500-c. 1800). The lyre-shaped instrument is fragme…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Find number: IOW-476BA6
Object type: JEWS HARP
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
An incomplete cast copper-alloy Jews harp of probable post-Medieval date (c. 1500-c. 1800). The prongs are missing due to two old breaks. …
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Find number: IOW-6B6666
Object type: JEWS HARP
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
An incomplete copper alloy Jews harp of probable Post-Medieval date (AD 1500 – AD 1800). Length 63.0mm, width of head 27.0mm and 6.0mm maxim…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: HESH
Created: 9 years ago
Updated: 8 years ago

Other formats: this page is available as qrcode json xml geojson pdf rdf representations.