Sound Cartography of the Communication Between Fortifications. The Horn Soundsphere and the Duty to Sound the Horn in Medieval Catalonia

Laura de Castellet


During the Middle Ages, communication for defensive purposes between castles and towers was done via visual signs, but an additional, faster and mobile method of communication was needed in order to avoid environmental issues. There is abundant archaeological, documentary, as well as iconographic evidence of horns and other sound producing devices to allow us to reconstruct them and carry out an in situ test of their soundsphere–sound range. Tests in archaeologically or documentarily confirmed landscapes provide data about sound communication networks and their social nature, about the speed of transmission, and even about toponymy related to this type of communication and protection. These tests allow also to propose a cartography of the sound landscape of the communication between fortifications.


Sound landscapes; soundsphere; castle; horn; duty to sound the horn; sound cartography; Catalonia;

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