first recorded sound

Monday, October 18th, 2010 | Author:

Thomas Edison wasn’t the first person to record sound. A Frenchman named Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville actually did it earlier. He invented a device called the phonautograph, and, on April 9, 1860, recorded someone singing the words, “Au clair de la lune, Pierrot repondit.” But he never had any intention of playing it back. He just wanted to study the pattern the sound waves made on a sheet of paper blackened by the smoke of an oil lamp. A group of researchers found some of his old phonautograph papers and used a computer program to play the recording. “Au clair de la lune, Mon ami, Pierrot…”

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  1. shadowfan771 says:

    @Foeley yeah, it makes feel like something is about to jump out and kill me.

  2. Epicfailbri says:

    it sounds like a pigeon.. no offense D:

  3. Epicfailbri says:

    @Dragynn999 O: I sooo agree! It sounds like the persons dying D:

  4. blackcerberus999 says:

    @Foeley Actually yeah… I kept thinking this was something you would hear in a creepy movie myself lol

  5. BitchinnShoes07 says:

    Has this been transferred to vinyl yet?

  6. DeutscheRossiya says:

    is the speed being played back well? but this recording was not made on a machine for playback,that’s why edison’s machine was better

  7. TheMeGaSpIkE0 says:

    Amazing BUT a little creepy ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. gopalrgupta says:

    wow, bet he must be rolling in his grave thinkin “to hell with sound wave patterns, i should’ve patented the spooky sound comind out of my machine”……

  9. Dragonlord294 says:

    wow thats amazing!!! its kinda cool hearing someone that lived a long time ago!

  10. fuzzleteala says:

    It’s the really bad sound quality they had back then that makes it REALLY creepy!

  11. osspanskooranice says:

    Now in HQ.

  12. jackthayer says:

    yeah u don’t want to hear this at night with the lights out….

  13. guitarwaysted says:

    My mother came into the room,and start singing the song,she knew the song without even seen this,she said i learned this at school when i was young,this not really spooks me,but to me its more like how can i say some melancholic feeling i feel.

  14. kenny10100 says:

    so thats how people sounded back in the day……..

    haha jk

  15. JohnathanLeeSprite says:


  16. peekapoohs4life says:

    I learned this song in French class… 9 years ago, I think. This song stuck with me, it really really did. Every now and then I’d be humming it ๐Ÿ™‚

    I can’t express how creeped out I am, as well as amazed; I’m hearing something that was sung 151 years ago.

    Does anyone else feel as if hearing this is a special priviledge? I certainly do.

  17. xXTheDarkLemonXx says:

    if only they knew that over a hundred years later so many people will me able to hear this…its amazing ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. fckboy96 says:

    Better than Justin Bieber.

  19. jondoe8889 says:

    Maybe we should just say ‘earliest known’. There are always inventors out there, many unknown. Columbus wasn’t the first Euro to find N America. But who was? The Wrights weren’t the first to fly, but they did have the Smithsonian guy behind them, getting the word out.

  20. Dragonlord294 says:

    it creeps me out to!!!:c

  21. dimiballas says:

    @TheRadar77 The fact is that this IS the first recorded sound…and credits go to the inventor of it…who is Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville…we are not seeking quality here but reliable proof of the first recorded sound in history…quality in recording sounds and reproducing them was something that would follow consequently in later years and here is where Thomas Edison gets his credit…

  22. fabianoasc says:

    Someone who died more than a century ago returns to life again to haunt the living ones.

  23. samhawas says:

    haunting voice from 150 years back

  24. Edlihtamable says:

    c’te merde, j’te jure, รƒยงa craint,

  25. Inkwish says:

    I can actually make it out the third time around. Around 0:06 you hear “Luuu-naaa”
    And the rest is harder to hear but I could make out “repondit” near the end.

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