The Bells and Trumpets of Solomon: Resounding Instruments of the Solomonic Grimoires

Light in Extension: A Magical Journal

bell

By Adam J. Pearson

Introduction: Ancient Origins of Horns, Trumpets, and Bells

The roots of ceremonial bells, horns, and trumpets stretch far into the distant reaches of prehistory.  According to Hyunjong (2009, p.27), the world’s oldest known musical instrument is a bone flute that was found at a Neanderthal habitation site in Slovenia.  This early flute was fashioned between 82,000 and 43,000 years ago from the bone of a cave bear (Hyunjong, 2009).  Like the bone flute, the first blowing horns and ‘trumpets’ were also crafted from parts of hunted animals, such as animal  horns (Warner et al., 2013).  Paralleling the horn and trumpet traditions, the earliest archaeological evidence of bells uncovered thus far dates to the 3rd millennium B.C.E. in the Yangshao culture of Neolithic China; these most ancient of all human bells were fashioned from clay pottery before bronze bells emerged with the advances of the Bronze Age…

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