Ravanahatha - the predecessor of the present day Violin

17 Sep 2020  Thu

India is a country where music, art, culture, and dance form a crucial part of people’s lives. Since the Vedic age, classical music has played an integral role in the journey of Indian music.

A significant part of Indian classical music is the Indian musical instruments. India Post has released a beautiful thematic set of six stamps on Musical instruments. The stamps are released in setenant format. Each sheet contains 15 se-tenant stamps of denomination 5 Rs. One of them depicts Ravanhatha.

The Ravanahatha is an ancient bowed violin, once popular in Western India and Sri Lanka. It is believed the ravanahatha originated in the Hela civilization of Sri Lanka during the King Ravana reign. According to legend, Ravana used the ravanahatha in his devotions to the Hindu God Shiva.

The bowl is made of a cut coconut shell that is covered with goat hide. A Dandi, made of bamboo, is attached to this shell. The two principle strings are made of steel and horsehair, respectively. The long bow has jingle bells.Throughout the medieval history of India, the kings were patrons of music; this helped in increased popularity of ravanhatta among royal families. In Rajasthan and Gujarat, it was the first musical instrument to be learned by princes.

Image Source: https://stampsofindia.com/

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