322.11 Arched harps

Arched harp. The body is one segment of giant bamboo, with wooden neck and soundboard made from a biscuit tin. With six nylon guitar strings from Bangkok, purchased by the collector, Jonathan Hugh-Jones.

The collector, Jonathan Hugh-Jones, describes the Karen maker of this harp in the chapter entitled 'Great Lake and the Elephant Man' his book 'True Love & Bartholomew' (Cambridge: 1991), which he wrote under his pen-name, Jonathan Falla. The maker looked after elephants, and his name translated as 'Red Star'. Jonathan Hugh-Jones notes that this Karen harp is rather a rare type, and is not much used by the Karen now. It is played as an accompaniment to a genre of short, pithy songs.

Collection Information

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