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Ethnomusicology Musical Instrument Collection

Musical Instruments in the Collection of the University of Washington Ethnomusicology Division
Data Dictionary
November 21, 2002; revised November 5, 2003 (changes in bold)

Faculty liaison: Laurel Sercombe

Metadata liaison: Kathleen Forsythe

Field name

DC mapping

Authority File


Instrument title

Title: Searchable, public; required

A short descriptive phrase in English describing what is depicted in the image. This field will be used as the thumbnail caption and will be used for sorting the thumbnails.  When the collection includes more than one example of an instrument, the instrument title will contain a number to make it unique, for example, Sho 1, Sho 2, etc.  A consistent pattern here will lead to better sorting of thumbnails in CONTENTdm.

Sound of instrument


Contains link to audio clip of instrument sound if available

Performance clip


Contains link to audio clip of instrument performance,  either solo or in ensemble, if available

Performance description

Description: Searchable, public

If audio clip is a performance contains name of performing group and/or individuals, location and date of performance

Instrument ID

Identifier: Searchable, public


Accession number for object.

Instrument name

Subject: Searchable, public


Contains name of musical instrument as found in New Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments (1984).  Variant forms/spellings of the instrument name given in variant instrument name.

Variant instrument name

Subject: Searchable, public


Includes alternate forms and spellings for instrument names.



Coverage: Searchable, public


Enter <Country>.
Derive place names from LC headings. If no authorized version of the place can be found, the cataloging supervisor will be alerted and a name may be established in the LC file.

Example: Japan<br>East Asia

Culture area

Subject: Searchable, public


Language or ethnic based provenance.

Hornbostel-Sachs No.

Subject: Searchable, public

Hornbostel-Sachs Classification of Musical Instruments

A system of classifying musical instruments according to the means of sound production.


Subject: Searchable, public


Includes musical genre terms and contexts in which music is performed.

Related instruments

Relation: Non-searchable, public


Link to related instruments in the Collection (field under development).


Description: Searchable, public


Free text field giving any descriptive information about the image that could be useful. Includes more details about what is depicted, photo notes, and the history of the object, including details about settings where the instrument is used. Different aspects could be separated by paragraphs <br><br>.

Examples:  A heterochord long half-tube zither with a hollow wooden body and sounded with a resined bow.  Approximately 1/5th of the body is at an obtuse angle to the rest of the body.  It has flat sides and undersurface of light coarse-grained wood.<br><br>


Subject: Searchable, public


Example: bamboo<br>lacquer<br>metal


Format: Non-searchable, public


Example: Total length 19.5”<br>pipe lengths 5 ½”- 16 1/8” (14-41 cm.)


Description: Searchable, public


Example: Brown wooden storage box<br>cloth cover<br>one sho stand.


Description: Searchable, public


A list of terms will be used, still to be devised. A delimiter (<br>?) will be used to separate following free text describing in more detail the most current known information about the state of the object depicted.

Examples: Good; crack on storage box lid along top length; cloth bag is ripped.

Digital Collection

Relation-Is Part Of

Ethnomusicology Musical Instrument Archive

Image No.

Identifier: Searchable, public; required

Photographs in this database are both originally in digital form and scanned.  This field contains either the file name for the digital image or accession number for the original photograph.

Contact Info

None: Non-Searchable, public; required

For further information contact: Archivist, University of Washington Ethnomusicology Division, School of Music Box 353450, Seattle WA 98195; (206) 543-0974.


Rights: Non-Searchable, public; required

This Musical Instrument database is intended for educational and instructional use; if you cite or download images, text, or audio, please acknowledge the University of Washington Ethnomusicology Archives.


Source; Non-searchable, public

Contains institution where the item is physically located.

University of Washington. Ethnomusicology Archives.

Record Last Updated

None: Non-Searchable, public

ISO standard

Date the metadata was last updated. Somewhat useful in determining currency of the instrument Condition.

Examples: 2002-07-24


Type: Searchable, public; required

DCMI Type Vocabulary

Used for cross database search limits.  Add sound if audio clips are available using <br> to separate terms.


Digital reproduction field

Format: Non-searchable, public


Describes the digital conversion process and the scanned resource.  If the item scanned is the artifact of record, it will be described in the Physical Description field, not here.  If item includes audio clips, will include capture and format information in another paragraph separated by <br><br>

Example of possible text: Scanned item: 1 photographic print : b/w ; 8 1/8 x 10 in. (produced from original negative.<br>Process: item scanned as a 3000 pixel TIFF image in 24-bit RGB color, resized to 640 pixels and converted to a JPEG image using Photoshop 6.0 using the JPEG quality measurement 3.

Sound fields to consider: Enter the characteristics of the digital sound file, separating each element with a semicolon. Include, as known:
--Format of digital sound file/type of compression (.wav, MP3, RealAudio);
--Duration (of audio sound file, such as 3 min. 32 sec.   --Bits per sample (bit depth, e.g., 16 bit);
--Sampling frequency (number of samples per second, such as 22,050 samples per second; state as 22.05 kHz);
--Audio channel configuration (stereo, mono, surround sound, bilingual, etc.);
--File size (byte, kilobyte, or megabyte size of digital file, such as 300 Kbytes, 12 Mbytes)

MP3; 2 min., 38 sec.; 16 bit; 22.05 kHz; mono; 271208 bytes

Banding information

Not applicable to this database as photographs already include a copyright symbol.