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Double dulcimer, Jean-Nicolas Lambert, Paris, c.1750

DETAILS

Title
Double dulcimer, Jean-Nicolas Lambert, Paris, c.1750
Maker
Year
Place
Object Number
RCM0208
Dimensions
Length: 1046mm. Width: 362mm. Depth: 138mm.
Acquisition
Gift from Donaldson, Sir George

Description

A double dulcimer (tympanon) consisting of a single trapezoidal frame with a soundboard on each face. Whichever dulcimer is played, the closed lid of the other forms a base. The two dulcimers are dissimilar in size, layout, stringing and decoration. The smaller instrument had four strings to each of the 24 courses, later reduced to 21. The larger instrument had 24 courses of six strings each, later reduced to 22 courses of four strings each. The sides and the exteriors of the lids are coarsely grained in reddish brown paint. The tops of the lids are edged, and divided into two panels, with applied moulded strips; they are hinged to the instrument with folded and riveted iron flap-hinges, which share central plates on the instrument and have removable pins. Each lid has a small turned foot at each corner, the pair on the short side being a little taller. Inside the lids, the inner rims are painted red, surrounding a pale blue ground. On this are naïve paintings of trophies of instruments surrounded by birds and flowers, within floral borders. One lid-fastening hook of bent wire remains.

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Dimensions

Length: 1046mm. Width: 362mm. Depth: 138mm.