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An Organ’s Metamorphosis: Thomas Dallam’s Sonic Transformations in the Ottoman Empire

  • Jennifer Linhart Wood
Chapter
Part of the New Transculturalisms, 1400–1800 book series (NETRANS)

Abstract

“An Organ’s Metamorphosis: Thomas Dallam’s Sonic Transformations in the Ottoman Empire” explores the significance of English sound in Istanbul through Thomas Dallam’s manuscript account of his unusual journey to deliver the gift of an extravagant, automated, self-playing musical organ to Mehmed III. Before its remarkable debut in Topkapi Palace, however, the organ suffered damage during its sea voyage; Dallam records that its pipes are “brused and broken” and the glue sealing the instrument has become “decayed.” Dallam repairs the organ, and the changes his organ undergoes echo the way that Dallam’s own body has metamorphosed through travel. Furthermore, all bodies and matter present for the organ’s concert in the seraglio are calibrated by the organ’s sound, and are transformed in the process of sounding otherness.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jennifer Linhart Wood
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.St. Mary’s College of MarylandSaint Mary’s CityUSA
  2. 2.The Folger Shakespeare LibraryWashington, DCUSA

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