Swedish Bagpipes

Think that bagpipes are a unique form of Scottish aural torture? Think again: behold the sakpipa, the Swedish bagpipes!

Yes. Pictured at left are " sakpipa säckpipa," which date from Medieval times. The tradition dwindled down to a single practitioner before undergoing a revival in the modern era. You can even listen to an MP3 recording of that old favorite - "Krigsvisa om danskarna" - about war with Denmark. Note the catchy lyrics:

"Armar, tarmar, lår och ben, sig upp i luften svinga,
och hela mänskokroppar med, sig stora flugor flinga..."

Which roughly translates as -

"Arms, guts, thighs and bones are flying through the air.
And whole human bodies too, attracting big flies."


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I understand the inventor of the bagpipes was inspired when he saw a man carrying an indignant, asthmatic pig under his arm. Unfortunately, the man-made sound never equalled the purity of the sound achieved by the pig.

Alfred Hitchkock
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