Ancient Lithuanian Kanklės / Construction, distribution

Kanklės of North Eastern Aukštaičiai

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The kanklės are in the shape of the boat or a coffin, usually no bigger than 645 x 515 x 195 x 122 mm, height 50 - 70 mm. The body is made out of one piece, six edged or rounded (less often), the thick end is higher than thin by 20 - 30 mm. The cut angle is not big, about 110 x 70, 125 x 65 degrees. At the thick end there is 30 - 40 mm in length long for the wooden sting adjusters to be tightened (the tighteners are screwed in from the bottom). At the narrow end from three sides there are left walls 25 - 30 mm high and 20 - 30 mm thick, through which across the body threaded metal stick for the strings to be attached. For the strings to attach stronger and to prevent slipping, sometimes that metal stick is threaded through the feather of the goose. Adornent is very simple. The top lid has a carved out six leaf (four - leaf, five - leaf) star, small, most often spread out in the shape of an oval small holes or some other shape cuts. To enable the kanklės to be hung up, at the thick end, narrow corner there is made a hole, through which a string or metal loop is threaded.

The most typical ones are 5 string, but occasionally it could be 3 - 8 strings.

Photo: The kanklės or North Eastern Aukštaičiai:
1 - Panevėžys reg., Rozalimas a., Derveliai v. PKM 3470;
2 - Biržai reg., 1854 year. BKM 928 (to see the drawing);
3 - Biržai reg., Laužadiškis v., 1839 year. ČDM Lt 2912 A;
4 - Biržai reg., Plepikiai v. BKM 926.

(BA 1991:33 - 34)

To see big photo

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Copyright © The Institute of Ethnomusic, 1996
Copyright © Romualdas APANAVIČIUS, 1996
Electronic publishing by Multimedia Center for Humanities, 1996