Thursday, January 7, 2016

World's oldest Drum found in Greenland

The Drum has a long history and now the time frame for drum remains has been pushed back even further!  Drum remains have been found in Greenland! This is interesting because wood were preserved in the ice and snow.  These remains are 4.500 years old.  They were found at  ancient Inuit archaeological sites in  Qeqertasussuk and Qajaa.

Excavations in Western Greenland have found remains that are not found elsewhere because of the cold conditions. 

Drums were and are still used in some cultures as an important part of religious ceremonies. The ancient drum parts show that in ancient Greenland, religion was already at a very developed stage. 

The drum was made by tying the wood together in a hoop, and then a piece of animal skin was spread over the top.  The sizes of these pieces are similar to modern drums used in Inuit peoples who live in Canada. 

A reconstruction of the drum by Martin Appelt, an archaeologist at the National Museum of Denmark, in collaboration with the Greenland National Museum and Archives, we know that the drums gave a loud, deep sound.

Before this discovery, the oldest drum fragments were found in Canada were 1000 years old. 

All the remains are already on display in museums in Qasigiannguit, and at the Greenland National Museum and Archives in Nuuk 

For more information: go to this link:

Where were the drum fragments found?
Why were the wood preserved?
How old are the drum fragments?
What does this tell us about the culture of the people in Greenland at that time?
How did the drum sound?
How do we know? 
How old are previous drum finds?
Why was the drum important to the Inuit?

Lesson Plan by Rachael Alice Orbach - English Teacher 

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