Earth's Ndrao-bang.

Singer not recorded.


This song was recorded by Samuel Pollard in his diary in the summer of 1911. He did not say who the singer was, nor did he undertake an English translation. There are, however, a number of English notes in the text which seem to indicate that, though the Miao was faithfully written, he did not at the time fully understand the meaning.

The name Ndrao-bang means either "youth flower" or "youth breath" depending on the tone in which "bang" is read. It is not clear in the manuscript. This individual is credited with the creation of earth and sky, but his main achievement was to make the Miao a race of singers.

Toward the end of the song it is asserted that book study wearied (literally "melted") the voice. The picture here is not the western one of students poring quietly over their books, but of Chinese school boys declaiming their lessons at the top of their voices, the measure of effort being proportional to the volume of clamour. Singing songs was a far more congenial occupation, and much less strain on the voice!

Literal Transcription

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Word97 Introduction
Word97 Translation
Word97 Transcription
Word97 Notes

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