n Indilinga African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems - Knowledge in traditional musical instruments in the example of timbila

Volume 10, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1683-0296



The article is based on a study that describes the knowledge and techniques of construction of mbila (singular of timbila in the chopi language). The study paid special attention to the search for knowledge and the ideas that makers have on the mbila. The mbila is known today, in its modern version, as the xylophone.

As the main aspects of the study was devoted to the implicit knowledge (occult, not conceptualized) about the construction and tuning of mbila, several measurements of the dimensions of the various types of timbila have been made to improve the description in terms of constitution and functioning. A brief review is also made on the choreography of the festival of timbila.

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