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I haven't heard of nor seen the horn you write about. I would love to see a picture of it, even measurements as well, if they are available. My fax is I doubt if the Larousse book you mention is in our library.
I own only the Larousse Int'l Illus. What is "obvious" to us I am frequently reminded must be carefully examined for bias. Even whether this ancient bone is a flute has been denied. To me, it's obviously a flute. But I've been forced to defend the obvious as if it wasn't obvious.
Perhaps the horn could be denied as a flute as well, unless we can defend the obvious there as well. As far as the open-closed ends issue goes, Match 2 in the essay assumes an open-ended flute.
Match 1 in the essay considers that it could have been a closed flute. The normal length of a femur is quite long. So we felt it was reasonable to assume that it was not part of a short ocarina type instrument.
We'll never know unless they find the rest of the object.
Where I deal with issues of "could have been" is where I tried my best to obtain reasonably accurate probabilities for certain statements in this essay. What I have held as conclusive in the essay is that the holes are consistent with those of a diatonic scale scale IF the flute is long enough.
What I held as probable is that the hole spacing reflects not so much an ocarina or 4 or 5 note scale with a half-tone or other pitch if it was a short flutebut a larger scale, likely parallel to the diatonic scale. I can't conclude this, but hold it probable for reasons examined in some of the correspondence note: There I pointed to the widespread cross-cultural fact of pentatonic and 7-note diatonic scales in our own history and the acoustic basis for these scales as justification for the probabilities being higher regarding the Neanderthal bone matching a diatonic rather than matching a more obscure or hitherto unknown scale.
I held match 2 as probable open-end minor scale over match 1 major, closed endbecause removing marrow is easier when the ends are broken off rather than drilling holes when marrow is still in the bone, and sucking it out.
And also because the dimensions of the fit are closer to an acoustic scale than the dimensions of match 1. Besides, how on earth could one measure these effects without the entire bone?
Having said that, I and my partner, Mike Finley, nevertheless would be interested in receiving copies of the work and experiments you've done or a summary of it on these matters as we certainly have developed a need to understand this ever since we embarked on this essay.
Someday, I expect a replica will be made of the old bone 43, yrs old, current estimate. At various lengths, it will be blown, and we'll see what the pitches really are.From a letter I wrote to a correspondent April 26, As to the Science News write-up, Nowell and Chase suggest a wolf as a possible carniviore making the holes.
The Economist offers authoritative insight and opinion on international news, politics, business, finance, science, technology and the connections between them. July (This essay is derived from a talk at Oscon ) A few months ago I finished a new book, and in reviews I keep noticing words like "provocative'' and "controversial.''To say nothing of "idiotic.'' I didn't mean to make the book controversial.
One evening over dinner, I began to joke, as I often had before, about writing an essay called “Men Explain Things to Me.” Every writer has a stable of ideas that never make it to the racetrack, and I’d been trotting this pony out recreationally every once in a while.
Holes, written by the excellent author, Louis Sachar, is an adventure and mystery book with a humorous touch. The story takes place mainly at the hot and humid Camp Green Lake, a juvenile detention facility where there is no lake, and no happy campers.
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