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date: 06 December 2019

Tumdak’ [tumdā]locked

  • Alastair Dick



Double-headed drum of the Santal people of Bihar, West Bengal, and Orissa, East India. The body is made of clay. The right head (about 20 cm in diameter) is smaller than the left (about 29 cm), and the centre of the conical body is very gently waisted (inverted bi-conical), though this is concealed by the leather lacings, densely laced in a ‘V’ pattern, giving a long, truncated conical appearance. Both heads (of cow- or goat-skin) are double, the upper skin (moudha) pasted to the lower (cakki) and cut away to leave an outer ring. On the right head the upper skin is about 37 mm wide; the lower has a paste (kharen) of powdered limestone, gram-flour, half-boiled rice, and soot, dried for three to four days and rubbed smooth with a stone. The paste on the left head (whose upper ring is about 45 mm wide) is thicker, has no soot and is not smoothed. Both heads are beaten by the hands. The ...

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