Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Hornbostel and Sachs
Organology, or the scientific study of musical instruments, has ancient roots, but the modern study began with the publication in 1914 of a classification system by Erich M. von Hornbostel and Curt Sachs. It was entitled Systematik der Musikinstrumente: Ein Versuch, or, The Classification of Musical Instruments: an Exploration. The document was translated into English in 1961 by Anthony Baines and Klaus Wachsmann and published in the Galpin Society Journal. It is readily available. The original German document is harder to find. With permission from the publisher, Zeitschrift fuer Ethnologie, I have prepared a pdf copy for e-distribution. I will post it here in the future. If you would like a copy before it is posted, please email me.