The Golden Lyre of Ur .

One of the three original lyres of Ur found in 1929, which are held today in the Museums of Pennsylvania , London and ( if returned) Baghdad . They are approximately 4,550 years old and thus predate the construction of the Great Pyramid, and even Stonehenge in England .

As all priceless relics these instruments are unplayable models. Full replicas are made of them.

The Original Lyre
The Replicated Lyre

Music of the Fertile Crescent

The background music which accompanies browsing this web site is transcribed and arranged by Prof. Anne Kilner as inscribed in cuneiform texts, in the Fertile Crescent from Ur in the east and Ugarit in the west. Kilner played these lyrics on a replicated lyre of the famous Golden Lyre of UR, which was found in the tombs of Ur .

At Kilner's request Janet Smith composed samples of the tunings in the purpose of demonstrating all seven of the diatonic tunings, which compose the musical tradition of Ur , Nippur , Assur and Ugarit ,

The pieces played here are a random sample of different tunes amongst which are the “ Hurrian Cult Song from Ancient
 Ugarit ”, “Hal Libba Marya”, an Assyrian hymn, plus “The Berber Wedding Song”, with the purpose of providing a taste of ancient music created by the makers of civilization, to mankind in our age.

These pieces were played for the first time in 2003 at the New York Metropolitan Museum , as well as a background to accompany the Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur when it went on tour.


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