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Mi-gyaung (crocodile zither)

Mi-gyaung (crocodile zither)

  • Place of origin:

    Burma (made)

  • Date:

    3rd quarter 19th century (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Wood, carved and polished.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

In the form of a crocodile known as a Mon Harp, with carved head, feet and conventional ornament. Eyes with glass inserts (1 now missing).
Strung with 5 strings (now 3 and broken) from a plate at the end nearest the crocodile's head stretching along the back through a pierced bridge, placed over the beginning of the tail, down to the 5 turning screws (1 missing) fitted on shaped brass plates on either side.

Place of Origin

Burma (made)


3rd quarter 19th century (made)

Materials and Techniques

Wood, carved and polished.


Length: 131 cm, Width: 15.2 cm

Object history note

Historical significance: Traditionally used in chamber music ensembles with the saung-gauk (harp); thro (violin type) & patala (xylophone).

Descriptive line

Burmese carved wood 5 string mi-gyaung (crocodile zither) or Mon Harp. Konbaung Dynasty (1752-1885). ca. 3rd quarter of 19th century.


Wood; Glass


Carving; Polishing


South & South East Asia Collection

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