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THE SOUTH FACE

OF THE HELICON
Ancient Egyptian Musical
Elements in Ancient Greek Music
Daniel Snchez-Muoz
Department of History and Sciences of Music (UGR)
Scholarship Researcher FPU (FPU14/00927)

INTRODUCTION

ORIENTALISM IN THE
MUSIC OF ANCIENT WORLD

Marcelle DuchesneGuillemin
ANCIENT GREEK MUSIC NEW MESOPOTAMIAN MUSIC

THE GREEK CONTACTS WITH ITS WORLD

Rutherford, I. 2016. Graecoegyptian Interactions:


Literature, Translation, and
Culture, 500 Bc-ad 300. Oxford
University Press
No chapters about the Music
No really interest in the GrecoEgyptian Musical Interactions
Maybe in the organology =
insufficient

TWO CONCEPTS ABOUT THE


MUSIC NO SO DIFFERENT...

lexis

Spoken Word
mousikh tecnh
Muses Art

orcesis
Dance
Melos
Music

Singing and
Lyrical Poetry

Make music = To sing


Common Vocal Nature of Music

A NEW VISION OF THE


LYRICAL REPERTOIRE

Egyptian Love Poetry & Sappho


Harpers Songs Demodocus (Odyssey)

THE INSTRUMENTS
The lyres

The harps

WISDOM VS.
HAPINESS IN MUSIC

NAM-NAR MELOS?

Apollo and Marsyas

Inanna and Dumuzi

WISDOM IN ANCIENT
MESOPOTAMIAN MUSIC
My barge 'Crown', the 'Stag of the Abzu',
transports me there most delightfully. It
glides swiftly for me through the great
marshes to wherever I have decided, it is
obedient to me. The stroke-callers make
the oars pull in perfect unison. They sing
for me pleasant songs, creating a
cheerful mood on the river.
Enki and the World Order, ETCSL , 1.1.3.

Enki, patron of
Mesopotamian music

HAPINESS IN ANCIENT
EGYPTIAN MUSIC
My body says, my lips repeat:/ Holy music
for Hathor, music a million times/ Because
you love music, million times music/ To your
ka wherever you are!/ I am he who makes the
singer waken music for Hathor/ Every day at
any hour she wishes./ May your heart be at
peace with music,/ May you proceed in
goodly peace,/ May you rejoice in life and
gladness/ With Horus who loves you,/ Who
feasts with you on your foods,/ Who eats
with you of the offerings,/ May you admit me
to it every day!
Second Hymn [to Hathor] from the Stela of
King Wahankh Intef II

Hathor and the


Egyptian music

CHARACTER OF GREEK MUSIC


The same root mel-:
Melos: Music (singing)
Meli, -itos: Honey, Sweet things
Pindar was a professional musician. But most
Greeks, we may be sure, would have agreed with
him in putting music high on the list of requisites
for the good life. Music, song, and dance were seen
as being, together with orderly sacrifices to the gods
and athletic facilities for men, the most
characteristic manifestations of a civilized
community in peacetime. The grimness of war is
expressed by calling it 'danceless, lyreless,
generating tears'. Words like 'lyreless' are
similarly used to convey the joylessness of death
and other miseries.
West, M.L. 1992. Ancient Greek Music, Oxford:
Clarendon Press, pp. 13-14.

CONSEQUENCES IN EGYPTIAN
AND GREEK MUSIC
The importance of dance
Dance as expression of the
happiness in Music
The aerophones
Egypt and Greece vs.
Mesopotamian and IndoEuropean absence of
aerophones
Bad character of music =Too
much happiness
Few presence in scribal
curriculum
Music and Homosexuality

CONCLUSIONS

ABOUT OUR MUSICAL ORIGINS


Egypt, relevant in Music of Classical World
To relate musical traditions in Ancient World
Exchange in Ancient History and Music

THANK YOU