Castanets in Spain
Country of the crafting: Spain
Region of the crafting: Andalucía
Type of the crafting: Musical instruments
1. Geographic area
The castanets have more than three thousand years of creation, their invention is coined to the Phoenicians who made the first castanets or chopsticks, using common wood and thanks to trade they expanded throughout the Mediterranean,However, it was in Spain that this instrument managed to gain a foothold in its culture, acquiring a remarkable importance, especially for flamenco music.
2. Crafts characteristics
Title: Castanets. Category: Musical instruments Country: Spain Provided by: IWS Source: internet
3. The technique
Castanets consist of two pieces of special wood that are in the form of a deep saucer, usually of chestnut, although other woods and materials have been used in more contemporary times. Each pair is pierced to put an ornamental cord, which is placed around the thumb. the tones of the pairs are different, generally; the lowest is called male and the highest female. the pair that sounds louder is usually carried in the right hand. the shells hang down and are manipulated by the fingers. Each instrument is handmade and according to the size of the user’s hand.
4. Used Materials
The best material for the construction of castanets is wood, better if it is hard and resistant wood they can be boxwood, walnut, holy stick, ebony ect … the last years have been extended by their good result other materials such as pressed cloth or fiberglass.
Castanets are a percussion instrument centuries old; Its origin dates back to 1000 BC. to the Phoenicians, an imminently commercial culture, which prospered in the countries of the Mediterranean basin: Greece, Turkey, Italy, Spain, etc.However, throughout history, Spain has been the country that has preserved and developed its use since then, castanets are part of the cultural heritage of Spain (they are considered the national instrument of the country). Thus, castanets are generally used to give color and a Spanish character to music.