Monday, 22 September 2014

Music Monday - The Oldest Song In Existence


As a matter of fact ...

I've talked about the oldest human and the oldest countries so for this Music Monday I thought I'd round off the trio by finding out the oldest music ever!

Music is something we take for granted, it's just seems to have been around forever. Everything has a beginning though. Of course, we can never truly know who was the first person to craft and play an instrument or even write down some music. 

What we do have though, is a tablet that is 3,400 years old found in Syria. Etched into its clay surface is the oldest song in existence ...




Found in the 1950's, the tablet contains a hymn written to the moon god's wife, Nikal. Written in the ancient 'Hurrian' language, it also has detailed inscriptions on how to tune a harp to play the song and performance instructions for a singer!


Professor Anne Kilmer was one of they key figures in taking these inscriptions and translating them into a modern music format. The task was long and arduous but the result was incredibly satisfying for the team upon completion. They got to sit back and listen to the music of the ancient people they had dedicated their lives to understanding. 


Although there are multiple different interpretations of the song, I quickly found a favourite. It's easy for me to sit back, relax and let my mind wander 3,400 years back in time to the sounds of our ancestors. I hope you do the same ...





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