Bagpipe Appreciation Day is celebrated on July 27th. It is dedicated to one of the oldest musical instruments – the bagpipe. For more than a thousand years, the bagpipe has been part of Scottish culture. It is used during weddings, funerals, events of national importance, and battles.
Despite the bagpipe being associated with Scotland and its culture and identity, it did not originate here. The first bagpipe was used by shepherds in Mesopotamia in the Middle East. There is also a version that the bagpipe existed in ancient Egypt, however, there are no supporting facts. Archaeologists have unearthed Hittite rock art dating back to 1000 BC, which supposedly depicted a bagpipe.
According to another version, the Hittites traded with the Egyptians, which is probably how the bagpipe came to Egypt, then to the Roman Empire. It quickly became popular when the Romans invaded Britain in the 5th century. In Scotland, bagpipes appeared in the middle of the 16th century, where they were used in the battle of Pinky. By the 18th century, bagpipes had become part of Scottish culture.
- The bagpipe belongs to the category of woodwind instruments.
- While becoming a real sensation in England, in other countries the instrument did not become so popular.
- The regions of England where the best bagpipes were produced are Worcestershire, Nottinghamshire, and Lancashire.
- In Scotland, bagpipes were used on the battlefield to communicate between soldiers (its sound reaches over 10 miles), transmitting information about advances, retreats, and other movements of troops.
- The bagpipe was played before a battle to inspire soldiers.
- There is a huge variety of bagpipes, but the Great Highland is recognized as the most popular.
How to take part
Visit events that are held in honor of this instrument, read books about the bagpipe, plunge into history. You can also visit a museum dedicated to the history of the bagpipe, where you will be told about the cultural significance of it. Take some bagpipe lessons, it’s very exciting!
When is Bagpipe Appreciation Day celebrated in 2023?
Bagpipe Appreciation Day is observed on July 27 each year.