PostDay – Ethnological treasure

Croatian post Ltd. Mostar has issued a commemorative postage stamp in sheet of 20 stamps, postmark and the first day cover featuring sargija (tambourine), one of the traditional musical instruments of Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Development of the music in Bosnia and Herzegovina, due to economic difficulties, political and cultural isolation from the Western Europe, was very slow. Folk music was transmitted orally and the first tunes for church service were recorded during the 11th and the 12th century. It was recorded that in 1442 Duke Stjepan Vukcic Kosaca, on his court, had an orchestra of flute, and chapel organs are mentioned in his will, probably the first in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Sargija or tambourine belongs to the group of long-necked plucked instruments. In the past it was often the companion of lyrical folk songs and dances, played by shepherds while guarding the flocks, played at gatherings, etc. It is spread in northern Bosnia, primarily in the Bosnian Posavina. In these areas it remained recognizable as a symbol of Croatian pride and it can be said that sargija helped in preservation of Croatians national identity.

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