Type: Membranophones > Drums > Barrel > Double >
Hornbostel-Sachs No#: 211.222.1
Diameter: Left Side cm ; Right Side cm.
Region: South Asia.
Description: The mrdangam [in Tamil; மரங்கம்i mridangam; in Sanskrit; mṛdaṅga mrit + anga, lit. ‘clay limb’, mṛdaṅg, mirdang, mirutaṅkam]. The mrdangam is an ancient name primarily for double headed elongated barrel drums. These double sided barrel drums, accompany both Hindustani and Karnatak classical musics. In earlier periods they were used in theatre music, and since that time they have been employed in concert forms and more elaborate styles of temple and devotional music.
Etymology: The name of the tuned barrel drum of Carnatic music is preserved in the as mṛdaṅgam or mirutaṅkam; in Hindustani Classical Music the drum mṛdaṅg or mirdang, may also be found as pakhāvaj.
Like the even more ancient and historically comprehensive chordophone name vīṇā, the Sanskrit mṛdaṅga indicates a certain musical status in Indian tradition as much as it does particular types of drum. In that of Hindustani music, while often called mṛdaṅg or mirdang, may also be found as pakhavaj.
The mṛdaṅga or khol of the East [Bengal, Orissa, Assam] and its relative the pung of Manipur accompany primarily the complex devotional music kīrtan.
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