Tubes with single or double tongues are known, apparently, from ancient times. The oldest surviving instruments of this type are two silver pipes found in the Sumerian royal cemetery in Ur and dating to 2800 BC. These tubes paired and had double tongues. Later, similar tubes made of metal, wood or bone appeared in Egypt, Asia Minor, Greece, India and the Far East. The main wind instrument in Ancient Greece was Avlos (the ancient Roman name is Tibia), often incorrectly called a flute. It consisted of two tubes with double tongues, which were played simultaneously, with one of the tubes giving a monotonous bass accompaniment for the other. A similar bourdon accompaniment has become a distinctive feature of another instrument with a double tongue – bagpipes. Ancient pipes became the forerunners of reed instruments of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Towards the end of the last, many appeared – among them shalmei, Krummhorn and bagpipes. Shalmey and Pommer immediately preceded the oboe and bassoon of the 18th century.
Oboe (About oboe)
The modern oboe is a 60 cm long conical wooden tube with a narrow channel and a double tongue, which is inserted into the narrower end of the instrument. It consists of three parts and is usually made of African ebony, although other types of wood and even plastic are used. The sound is generated due to the vibrations of the air column inside the tube, excited when air is blown in by the quick vibration of two reed plates making up a double tongue. The bottom sound is extracted when the air column oscillates as long as possible, i.e. air filling the tube along its entire length. The length of the column is regulated by a number of side holes drilled in the tube, which the contractor opens and closes directly with your fingers or using a valve system. When these valves open one by one, the air column is shortened and the sound rises. The full range of the instrument is from B-flat of a small octave to la third octave.
The modern oboe in its original form appeared at the end of c. in France as a result of the improvement of the chalmey. Very quickly, he entered the permanent composition of the symphony orchestra and spread throughout Europe. By 1700 the oboe took on a form which it retained with only minor changes for a century. It had six holes and two valves. In the XIX century. Significant changes occurred in the number of holes and in the valve mechanism. Theobald Boehm (1794–1881) developed a system of springs, levers and valves, which made it possible to make more holes and arrange them in accordance with the requirements of acoustics. Designed for flute, the Boehm system was adapted for all woodwind instruments. The most actively oboe reconstruction proceeded in France and Germany. The German oboe, retaining the wider channel of the classical oboe and using a wide, somewhat harsh tongue, had a rich, dense, as if dark timbre. The French oboe, with narrower tongue and channel, had a more brilliant and sharp sound. R. Strauss preferred the oboe to the French system and contributed to its approval by the majority of oboes of Germany and Central Europe. The French oboe, basically of the same system that was adopted by the Paris Conservatory in 1881, is now the most widely distributed. The oboe of the German system was popular only in Russia, although recently the instruments of the French system began to prevail there. In Vienna, Zuleger’s oboe remains popular, in style and design closer to the classical oboe.