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date: 14 November 2019

Enseegu [ensegu, nseegu, nsegu]locked

  • Peter Cooke

Extract

[ensegu, nseegu, nsegu]

Term for a set of flutes, or a single flute, associated with the courts of the kings of Bunyoro and Tooro in Uganda. The instruments in Bunyoro were made by joining two wooden troughs to form a slightly conical tube made airtight along its length by a covering made from the trachea of a cow or strips of lizard skin. The tube has a sharply bevelled blowing rim and usually a small hole at the the tip of the distal end. This hole can be opened to provide an extra note, though the larger flutes each sound usually only one note in an ensemble. The playing is sometimes combined with brief vocal recitations.

In neighbouring Nkore, which once also supported a royal court, the sets were known as esheegu (or nshegu) and were made from bamboo or clay in three different sizes (called, from smallest to largest, enyahuro, encwa...

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