1745, Manufacturer: Joannes Daniel Dulcken




Besides Italy and France, Flanders - home of the harpsichords of Daniel Dulcken (1706-1757) - is considered a third such centre. Dulcken settled in Antwerp in 1738 and according to his contemporaries soon became the most important harpsichord maker after Ruckers. His instrument has two manuals, which allows for rapid changes of dynamics when each is set to a different register. The instrument is equipped with four registers, one of which is a four-foot register, which sounds an octave above written pitch. Due to the different plucking points of the three eight-foot registers, each has a different timbre. The casing of such harpsichords was usually plain and monochrome. This harpsichord is presumed to have belonged to the Emperor, and on the inside of the lid there is a painting supposedly showing an auxiliary building of Schönbrunn in the background. It is likely that this picture was painted after the harpsichord had been delivered to Vienna, and most likely the artist composed the sujet (palace, waters, royal carrage, huntig scene) from different illustrations. (rh/bd)

Rudolf Hopfner: Masterpieces from the Collection of Historic Musical Instruments. A Short Guide through the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Vol. 1, Vienna 2019.
Victor Luithlen: Kunsthistorisches Museum. Katalog der Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente. Teil 1. Saitenklaviere, Wien 1966.

Location: Neue Burg, Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente Saal 13

Object data

Object Name



Belgium, Antwerp



Dimensions Cover size is a museum or exhibition-specific information. It does not specify the real dimensions of the musical instrument.

2620 mm x 975 mm x 1000 mm

Image rights

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente

Inv. No.

Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente, 726

Kunst & Patenschaft

Das Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien dankt Frau Ann Murray sehr herzlich für die Patenschaft!