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date: 13 December 2019

Arghūl [arġūl, argul, arghoul]locked

  • William J. Conner
  •  and Milfie Howell


[arġūl, argul, arghoul]

Double clarinet with a cylindrical bore, composed of melody pipe and drone pipe each with a single-beating reed; the drone is much longer than the melody pipe (see fig.1). The arghūl belongs to the family of idioglot clarinets, which includes the zummāra, çifie (Turkey), launeddas (Sardinia), and so on. Such pipes date back at least to the Egyptian New Kingdom (1580–1090 bce). Villoteau (1809) mentioned three different sizes of arghūl: the ‘arghoul el-kebyr’ (big), ‘arghoul el-soghayr’ (medium), and ‘arghoul el-asghar’ (small). Elsner (1969) listed a variety of names applied to various types of arghūl (without reference to relative size): ‘ei-arġūl el-kebīr, el-arġūl el-soġair, arġūl ġab (ġāb means pipe, reed-pipe), ġāb, sibs ġāb, sibs, and mizmār muzdawağ (mizmār is a general term for wind instrument, muzdawağ means double, in pairs)’.

The big arghūl is made in nine parts, each having a name, which might vary from region to region. It consists of a pair of mouthpieces that include the up-cut reeds; two short sections called ...

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Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council