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The Medieval Hurdy-Gurdy

Source: The Science News-Letter, Vol. 12, No. 344 (Nov. 12, 1927), p. 319
Published by: Society for Science & the Public
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First Glances at New Books Francis Aveling-Doran ($2.50). -Winterton C. Curtis and Mary J.
Contains much information about re- Guthrie-Wiley ($3.75). A college
cent research on mental efficiency by textbook, complete and well illus-
AMERICAN MEDICINE AND THE a leading British psychologist. The trated.
H. Moore
PEOPLE's HEALTH-Harry author's aim-to show how we can Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927
-Appleton ($5). Presentation of make economies in our mental and SERUM DIAGNOSIS OF SYPHILIS
the economic, sociological and politi- physical energy-suggests a practical BY PRECIPITATION-R. L. Kahn-
cal aspects of conditions in the field working text book of applied psy- Williams and Wilkins. An account
of medicine today. Of particular in- chology. In a sense he achieves this of the development, standardization
terest to all thinking people and to purpose. His objective and imper- and clinical application of the author's
those engaged in public health work. sonal presentation of the subject will test to determine syphilis.
Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 be useful to the psychologist applying Science News-Letter. November 12. 1927
science in factories, laboratories, and MUSIC
THE HUMAN HABITAT-Ellsworth schools. The lay reader, however, will The Medieval Hurdy-Gurdy
Huntington-Van Nostrand ($3). A find comparatively little in the discus- Quotation from HANDBOOK OF THE COL-
very readable account of the in- sion that he can transfer direct to his THE U. S. NATIONAL MUSEUM-Frances
fluence of geographic factors, espe- Densmore-U. S. Government Printing Office.
daily life.
cially climate, on the rise and fall of The earliest stringed instrument
civilizations. The author ranges to Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 fitted with keys was probably the
every corner of inhabited lands and hurdy-gurdy, which in the Middle
draws on all periods of history for SEX AND REPRESSION IN SAVAGE Ages was almost as popular as the
materials. SOCIETY - Bronislaw Malinowski pianoforte of the present day. It
Harcourt, Brace ($3.50). Principles should be understood that the
Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927
of psychonanalysis are herein applied hurdy-gurdy of medieval times was
INDUSTRY'S COMING OF AGE-Rex- to primitive men and women in order in no way related to the street organ
ford Guy Tugwell-Harcourt, Brace to make clearer their mental attitude which in modern times is called by
($3). Here is a survey of the recent toward courtship, mating, and family that name. It has always been asso-
technological history of industry. The ties. While not agreeing with Freud ciated with rural life, like the bag-
author presents theories to account for in many points, Dr. Malinowski uses pipe, but in the first half of the
increased production. Barriers to his method of approach and shows eighteenth century it contributed to
further advance such as lack of in- that in primitive society conflicts and the amusement of the French higher
telligent direction and the tradition- repressions affect behavior just as classes during the years when mock
alized and backward profession of among higher civilizations. shepherds and sheperdesses were in
economics are canvassed and remedies vogue. It is also called a vielle. The
indicated. Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 old Latin name for the hurdy-gurdy
Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927
was organistrum, and this form of
VACUUM TUBE AMPLIFIERS FOR instrument was so large that it took
MAL ACTIVITY AT "THE GEYSERS," ter Joseph Creamer-University of strument was so long that two
CALIFORNIA-E. T. Allen and Arthur Maine (50c). A booklet that ex- players laid it across their knees,
L. Day-Carnegie Institution ($2.25). plains some fundamentals of radio in and one turned the crank while the
An interesting pioneer effort in the a scientific yet understandable way. other touched the keys. A typical in-
utilization of geothermal power here Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 strument had only one melody string.
receives complete and authoritative The hurdy-gurdy is allied to both
scientific treatment. FOREST AND WATER-Raphael Zon bowed and keyed instruments, as its
Science News-Letter, -U. S. Department of Agriculture.
November 12, 1927 strings are frictioned and their vi-
An important summary and bibliog- brating length is affected by keys.
INDUSTRIAL RESEARCH LABORA- The friction is accomplished by a
raphy of a subject that is intimately
TORIES OF THE UNITED STATES- wheel, operated by a crank which
connected with Mississippi flood relief
Bulletin 60-Compiled by Clarence J. the player turns with his right hand.
and prevention.
West and Ervye L. Risher-National Four of the five strings are drones,
Research Council ($1). A revised Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 and sound continuously unless moved
and enlarged third edition. The away from the wheel by a simple
original edition of 1920 listed about UPTON SINCLAIR-Floyd Dell- contrivance. The melody string over
300 industrial laboratories, the present Doran ($2). In the field of eco- the body of the instrument, and its
contains data on 1000 laboratories. nomic and sociological writings Upton vibrating length is changed for each
Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 Sinclair holds a unique place. Why note by- the pressing of a key, as a
this is so is clearly and interestingly violinist stops a string with his
TRANSACTIONS OF THE AMERICAN developed in this critical biography. fingers. Sometimes two melody
strings are used, the pair being tuned
April, 1927-National Research Coun- Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927
in unison. Thus the instrument
cil ($3 ). Reports and papers deal- played a melody with an accompani-
ing with the scientific discussion of MAINTENANCE OF INTERIOR MAR-
geodesy, seismology, meteorology, ter- BLE-Bureau of Standards Tech- ment of drone tones, but could not
nologic Paper 350-D. W. Kessler- be used for playing part music. As
restrial magnetism and electricity,
Govternment Print~ing Office (35c). this form of music was greatly en-
oceanography, volcanology, and other joyed by the people, the hurdy-
problems of the figure and physics The practice and theory of cleaning
marble. gurdy gradually gave way to instru-
of the earth. ments on which it could be played.
Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927 Science News-Letter, November 12, 1927

This content downloaded from on Fri, 20 Jun 2014 19:06:58 PM

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