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Transverse flute

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Body of bamboo, the proximal end shaped into two prongs (155 mm. long) just beyond node. Burned-in geometric designs on main body; the prongs showing lizard, window, airplane, and random repeating letters. One blow-hole, just above node. No fingerholes.


Small glued-on label with typed number "1"


Before 1979, private collection of New Guinea material compiled about 1930, New York; about 1979, Lillian Caplin, Center for Musical Antiquities, New York; before 1984, sold by Caplin to Douglas Deihl, Northampton, Massachusetts; 1984, sold by Deihl to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 13, 1984)

Credit Line

Helen and Alice Colburn Fund

about 1925

Object Place

Possilbly Central Highlands, Papua New Guinea


Length 46.4 cm, width 3.8 cm (Length 18 1/4 in., width 1 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique



Musical Instruments


Musical instruments, Aerophones