Hawking Drum


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 684

Falconry was an ancient aristocratic pastime in many parts of the world. Horns, whistles, and drums were used to signal and flush out game.  Mughal and Indian hunters suspended drums on the right side of their saddles sounding them to startle the prey and signal their attendants that the hawk was in flight. Made of cast zinc alloy inlaid with silver floral designs (bidriware), this hawking drum from the late 18th or early 19th century comes from the Deccan Plateau in central India.

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