Shell horn (dungkar), copper, silver, gilding, semi-precious stones; size: 55 cm x 29 cm x 11,5 cm; loan from the National Museums & Galleries on Merseyside, Liverpool
The horn, made out of the shell of a sea snail, is mainly used to call the monks together for their prayers. The tone is said to be equal to the »pure ocean of wisdom» and to lead the believer to the understanding of the Buddhist teaching. The wing which is attached to the main body is decorated with a pair of dragons and framed by lotus motives. The dragons' eyes are set with lapis lazuli. In their claws they hold further precious stones.
Oboes (gyaling), copper, silver, wood; H: 60 cm; loan from the National Museums & Galleries on Merseyside, Liverpool
Oboes are always played in pairs. They are mostly used in combination with long horns.
Wind instruments like oboes or long trumpets are always played in pairs. The long trumpets can be up to four meters long; the pipe sections can be moved into one another.
Photo by Christian Schicklgruber