Facts About Harps

What Family Is The Harp In?

The harp belongs to the string instrument family. Other instruments in the string family include the piano, guitar, and violin.

Facts About Harps

The harp is captivating with it’s sounds and enchanting in it’s appearance; the harp holds a unique place in the world of music. As one of the oldest known musical instruments, the harp boasts a rich history that spans thousands of years and numerous cultures. From potential origins in ancient Egypt to its prominent role in classical orchestras, the harp has captured the hearts of musicians and listeners alike.

Harps feature distinct melodies and ethereal tones; this string instrument has a fascinating story to tell. Here are some intriguing facts about the harp that will deepen your appreciation for this extraordinary musical marvel.

Whether you are an avid music lover or simply curious about the world’s cultural heritage, join us on a journey into the enchanting realm of the harp.

1. One of the Oldest

The harp is one of the oldest known musical instruments, with its roots dating back more than 4,000 years. Many believe that it’s origin lay in ancient egypt – though it could date much further back.

2. Celestial Music

It is often associated with heavenly or celestial music due to its angelic sounds and tones. The popularity of the harp is wide – ranging from religious through classical and even into the popular music domain.

3. Largest Harp

Harps come in various sizes and designs, ranging from small lap harps to large concert grand harps. The largest type of harp, the concert grand pedal harp, can reach a height of up to 6 feet and has 47 strings.

Harps in Wales

In Wales, the harp holds a deep cultural significance. It has been the national instrument of Wales since the 18th century and is often associated with Welsh traditional music and storytelling.

One of the most famous Welsh harpist was Nansi Richards (1888-1979). She was a major figure in promoting traditional Welsh music and played an instrumental role in reviving interest in the triple-harp tradition of Wales.

Harps Worldwide

Historical records show that ancient Egyptians were among some of the the earliest recorded users of harps. Pharaohs often had personal court musicians who were skilled at playing this instrument during their reigns.

The Irish Celtic Harp is also historically significant as it was banned by English rulers during British colonization. This ban aimed to suppress Irish culture but ultimately failed due to the resilient nature of Irish musicians who continued playing underground until it regained popularity.