The stringed drum and the 16th century music: New iconographical sources

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The present paper deals with a stringed drum depicted in an anonymous Catalan panel from the mid 16th century. The panel, coming from the church of Barruera (Boí valley), disappeared during the Spanish Civil War and we only have a black and white photography kept in the Institut Amatller d'Art Hispànic in Barcelona. Nevertheless, the study of this depiction shows several aspects related to the instrument and its musical use. Some of these aspects allow us to deal with different hypothesis connecting the stringed drum with the performance practice: on the one hand the instrument appears in a courtly renaissance atmosphere, being played at a banquet; on the other hand the instrument appears not only accompanying the one-hand flute (as it can be seen in other depictions) but also making up a consort together with a fiddle.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-59
JournalAnuario Musical
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011


  • Catalonia
  • Iconography
  • Minstrel
  • One-hand flute
  • Organology
  • Renaissance
  • String drum

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