History and origin of the Jawari 3.

The Mesopotamian lutes travelled to Syria and south to Egypt and Africa where they became extremely popular. Today we can still find the very auspicious Begena from Ethiopia. (See here a begena that is for sale from this site). Apparently this Ethiopian box-lyre is an old instrument from Ethiopia and Sudan, most probably related to lyres from the New Kingdom period of ancient Egypt, and undoubtedly inspired by the Sumerian lute. The begena  has a wide flat wooden or bone bridge with a little piece of leather placed between the gut string and the bridge, to create a buzzing sound. Although using other materials, it has exactly the same principles as the Indian tanpura. Legend has it that the begena was the instrument played by King David of the Israelites. Remarkably, there are lyres known as tanbura that originated in upper Egypt and Sudan.

Beganna Ethiopia

I endeavour to suggest that because of the geographical location of Mesopotamia the lyre must have also found its way into Ancient India. There were many peoples travelling East and it was also about that time in history that the Aryans were settling down in the Indus valley, where the great civilisations of Mohenjodaro and Harappa emerged. According to B.C.Deva, it was doubtful that lyres existed in India at all, except for one vague lyre type instrument on one of the Indus valley inscriptions.

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