Until the early 19th century, the harp was restricted to playing in a limited range of keys, owing to the diatonic tuning of its strings. By turning hooks or employing a pedal mechanism, single strings could be tuned a semitone higher, enabling a player to change key to a certain extent. As every diatonic scale is made up of seven notes, the harp needs seven pedals. Brunner’s harp has an additional pedal that activates a swell mechanism which opens and shuts five flaps located on the back of the soundbox. This offered the possibility for further dynamic contrast. However, the effect was limited, and this feature failed to catch on. (rh)
Lit.: Rudolf Hopfner: Masterpieces from the Collection of Historic Musical Instruments. A Short Guide through the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Vol. 1, Vienna 2019.
1670 mm x 855 mm x 560 mm
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente
Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente, 998
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