Flutopedia - an Encyclopedia for the Native American Flute

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The Racket

[Racket] One of the many instruments on display in the Historical Instruments Collection of the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna is the Racket. Two are actually on display.

The technical notes of the museum state:

Two Rackets Germany, 16th century, Ivory, L:12cm, Tube L: 103.5 cm, SAM Inv. No. 213
“Technical advances in the 16th centry woodwind instrument construction made it possible to have different parallel bores in wood or ivory instruments. This meant a more compact size for bass instruments.
The double-bored dulcian was the forerunner of today's basoon.
The racket, on the other hand, never advanced beyond the Renaissance and Baroque periods. In this particular case, nine bores in the ivory cylinder meant that these instruments of twelve centimeters could have an air column nine times that long. The bore diameter is relatively narrow, making the sound "very soft, almost as if one were blowing through a comb”.

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