Set of bellows-blown Lowland bagpipes

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owned by Malcolm Macpherson

Postcard of Set of bellows-blown Lowland bagpipes.
© National Museums Scotland

Set of bellows-blown Lowland bagpipes

Set Lowland bagpipes, bellows-blown, which belonged to Malcolm Macpherson, Calum Piobair (1833 - 1898). The chanter and drones tune as in the Highland pipes These pipes would have been used for indoor piping and were played at dances since, being blown with dry air, they would keep in tune for a longer period.

The Lowland pipes, often called the Border bagpipe, seemed to have become a distinctive instrument by the 18th century. It has a chanter, usually slightly smaller than the Highland bagpipe chanter, and three drones - two tenors and a bass set in a common stock - and is bellows blown. It sounded and tuned as the Great Highland bagpipe but would not have produced such a strident or carrying sound.

A distinguishing characteristic was the mounting of the three drones in a common stock, and the use of bellows strapped under the arm to provide a supply of air. Such a bagpipe would sometimes be described as a 'cauld wind pipe', in contrast to the mouth-blown bagpipe in which the player's breath was hot and lurid. The lowland pipes were the instrument favoured by the Town or Burgh Piper of Lowland Scotland.

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Online ID: 000-000-579-665-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0869: The Bagpipe Collection
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  H.1995.790 (1)
What: Set of Lowland bagpipes
Who: Malcolm Macpherson, Calum Piobair (owner)
The Museum of Piping, Glasgow (place of display)
Description: Set of bellows-blown Lowland bagpipes.
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