Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Rkangling

Date:
late 19th century
Geography:
Tibet
Culture:
Tibetan
Medium:
Copper
Dimensions:
L.: 35.6 cm (14 in.); Diam. of mouthpiece: ca 1.9 cm (3/4 in.); Diam. of Opposite end: 6.4 cm (2-1/2 in.)
Classification:
Aerophone-Lip Vibrated-trumpet / trombone
Credit Line:
The Crosby Brown Collection of Musical Instruments, 1889
Accession Number:
89.4.108
Not on view
A single rkang-gling ('leg bone flute') is used with a pellet drum to escape epidemics. Pairs signal the entry of ritual dancers, and perform rituals connected with fierce deities. The head of a chu-srin (Sanskrit: makara), a sea monster or a dragon, often provides a decorative metalwork bell. When the rkang-gling is made of metal, bosses decorated with trefoils cover the joints where the sections of cooper and/or silver tube are joined. The trefoil, a three cusped design, is an emblem of power and authority and is used as the head of a scepter. The chu-srin and dragon are associated with water and rain and may decorate the rkang-gling.
Baron von Brentz ; Mary Elizabeth Adams Brown
Catalogue of the Crosby Brown Collection of Musical Instruments: Asia, Gallery 27. 2. Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1903, vol. II, pg. 16.

Catalogue of the Crosby Brown Collection of Musical Instruments: Gallery 27. 1. Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1901, vol. I, pg. 16.



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