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Images from The Beede Gallery

Plucked Lamellaphone (Tyitanzi), Angola, West Africa, early 20th Century

NMM 1243.  Plucked lamellaphone (tyitanzi), Angola, West Africa, early 20th century. Played by depressing and releasing the nine (originally ten) tongues (lamellae), five of brass and four of forged iron, with the thumbs. Flat soundtable incised with a pattern of lozenges flanked by triangles. Small convex discs of brass at the ends, and five jingling metal rings strung on a loop of twisted iron. Overall length: ca. 215 mm; width: 101 mm; depth: 26 mm.  Arne B. Larson Collection, 1979.


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Tyitanzi, Angola, West Africa, early 20th century

Lamellae (tongues)
Decorations on lower half of soundtable

One hole, possibly for a mirliton, is carved on the front of the soundtable beneath the lamellae. Two smaller holes are caved near the top, possibly for the attachment of a cord to suspend the instrument.

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