Do all of you remember playing around in music class on an instrument called the xylophone? Well this historical instrument, using the Musical Stones of Skiddaw, makes me look at the modern day piano or xylophone from a completely different perspective.
Around 1785, Peter Crosthwaite, an eccentric inventor, was walking around the area of Skiddaw in North Cumbria, England when he made a startling discovery. He found "hornfels" rock that produced sound. He spent months and months looking for more rocks that made the desired sound he was looking for.
The result was a type of xylophone, in which he set up to attract visitors to his museum. With the help of his daughter and an old woman, they formed an impromptu welcoming party to the Keswick Museum.
According to the Musical Stones of Skiddaw Blog, the updated instrument is a 14 foot-long 1.5 ton stone xylophone made in 1827 by Keswick stonemason Joseph Richardson out of rare 'hornfels' rock found between the mountains Skiddaw and Blencathra in North Cumbria, UK.
Also check out:
Ancient Digger: Leoninus and Perotinus: The First Polyphonic Music
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