Peace Bell Sounds of the World
Ringing Ideals of Freedom and Peace Bell Sounds Through
the Sight, Sound and Symbol of the Bell!
Hello, my name is Doug Martin and I want you to know about the peace bell sounds of the world. On the right, you can watch a video clip of my visit to the World Peace Bell in Newport, Kentucky. I was there in the Spring of 2008. The World Peace Bell is the largest free-swinging bell in the world. Weighing in at an amazing 66,000 pounds and measuring 12 feet high and 12 feet wide, it was cast in Nantes, France at the Fonderie de l’Atlantique, December 11, 1998. It was designed by the Verdin Company of Cincinnati, Ohio, in association with Pierre Paccard of Annecy, France.
“The bell was originally crafted to be rung on the International Day of Peace , in 2000. Since then, the bell sounds has become an icon for the city of Newport and marks the location for many events and civic gatherings,” according to the Cincinnati Regional Tourism Network.
We thought you might enjoy hearing other bells of peace, freedom and spirit as well. Here are the powerful and beautiful bell sounds of some of the most famous bells of the world:
Bell sounds until modern time have been functional as well as cultural reminding us of the time and helping to regulate daily activities. Bells can be rung in so many different ways and now many of them are rung with the push of a button or the turn of a key. Today they are mostly cultural, sacred and symbolic. England is called the “Ringing Isle”, because of all its churches and the English tradition of change ringing. This is ringing anywhere from 5 to 12 bells in sequence. The numbers of changes with 5 bells is 125 but the number of changes with 12 bells grows exponentially to 480 million different changes. No were is art of change ringing more present than the bells of Westminster Abby as we now listen to these changes.
Switzerland is often thought as the land of bells because of a group of musicians PT Barnus brought over from England and he marketed and called them by the colorful title \"The Swiss Bell Ringers.\" Actually besides church bells the only things that ring bells in Switzerland are the sheep, goats and cows on the mountains and hills. In front of the town square stands the Cathedral in Zurich which is surrounded by other churches so that at certain times one can hear this whole assembly of different church bells rise a crescendo and created a symphony of the bell sounds of Zurich that was truly overwhelming.
Bell sounds are most inspiring around the seasons of Christmas and Easter where much of the Western world is celebrating these two sacred but joyous seasons. It is interesting to note that bells in the West can be traced back to the 6th century as they create sounds of jubilation as well as meditation and introspection. It is also interest that bells form a sort of anthesis of action and thought. In times of war bells were stolen and melted down to make cannons but in time of peace cannons are melted down to make bells. We now visit a little town on the Rhine across from Heidelberg called Speyer. The cathedral there in that Baroque city is over 1000 years old Listen to its sounds.
Do you know that during the age of Bronze the first bells were made in China over 3000 years ago. Like peace the making of a finally tuned bell and then fashioning a cohesive set of bells like in a carillon is both an art and a science. A most important element of this undertaking is to make sure that the overtones match in each bell and this was an art perfected by the Hemony brothers Pieter and Francois in the low countries of the Netherlands in the 1650’s. We now go to a little Alpine Village and agricultural hamlet high up on the mountains, known as Arosa. So now image yourself in this enchanting place that dates back to the 13th century as we now hear the bells of Bergkirchlein.
Listen to the majestic sounds of these bells from a small town in Klagenfurt, Austria as you read the following ways bells can be rung. As most of you know the clapper inside or outside the bell is what creates the sound when it strikes this bell metal of which there are many different interesting bell shapes. In change ringing it is the bell that moves in a semicircle by the ringer several stories below that makes the sound. Bells also move back and forth along a smaller plane which engages the clapper either personally or electronically. Sometimes the bell is stationary and ropes are connected to the clappers which are then pulled back striking the metal especially in Russia. In China bells are often struck from the outside by a mallet, soft hammer or large log called a ramrod. Finally carillonneurs ring bells from keyboards where bells remains stationary and the clapper on the outside of the bell is what carillonneur engages by striking the keyboard with the sides of his fist to make it ring. Bells in a carillon are diatonic and need to have more a minimum of 23 bells allowing the carillonneur to play tunes and even add harmony. The largest carillon is at Riverside Church in New York City. It has 74 bells of which range from 10 pounds to 20 tons.