The pan flute or panpipes (syrinx) was a music wind instrument very first used through the old Greeks. Most frequently played by shepherds, the earliest use was in the Cycladic archipelago in the 3rd millennium BCE, and also representations of the instrument run appropriate through the background of Greek art.

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Although in part accounts the invention of the instrument to be attributed to Cybele or Hermes, the deity most closely linked with the panpipes and also widely attributed with its development was the pastoral god Pan. In Greek mythology, Pan, the patron the shepherds, dropped in love through the Nymph Syrinx, daughter the Ladon the river-god. Fleeing his attentions, Syrinx pleaded v Zeus to save her and also just as soon as Pan recorded her, Zeus turn the Nymph right into reeds. Enraged, Pan smashed the reeds into pieces but on enjoy he to be struck with remorse and also wept and kissed the broken reeds, every that stayed of his beloved. Together he kissed the reeds, he discovered that his breath could create sound from them, and also so that made the music instrument that would bring the lost Nymph"s name.

Panpipes were built from 4 to eighteen cane tubes (without any kind of lateral holes) which to be fastened with each other using cane, flax, or wax. Play by holding the instrument in both hands and also blowing throughout the top finish of each tube, different notes were created with different lengths of pipe or by equal size tubes blocked at different points by wax. The sound developed was deep and rich.

The instrument is shown both in sculpture, such as small marble Cycladic statues and clay figurines, and likewise on decorated ceramics, particularly red- and also black-figure ceramic from Attica. Representations of Pan, Hermes, Attis, Satyrs, and more rarely Eros (only in so late Antiquity, 2-3rd century CE) regularly depict them playing the instrument.

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Andrikou, E. (et al). Presents from the Muses. Hellenic set of Culture, Athens, 2004Carabatea, M. Greek Mythology. Peania, Pergamos, 2007


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Mark is a history writer based in Italy. His distinct interests incorporate pottery, architecture, human being mythology and also discovering the concepts that all worlds share in common. The holds one MA in political Philosophy and is the publishing Director at WHE.