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Square Pianos

The square piano was one of the most popular keyboard instruments in the late 18th and early 19th century. A deep passion of Eric Feller for square pianos was one of the main reasons to create a rare collection of square pianos which is worldwide unique. Here you will find a fine selection of particularly interesting instruments. Further instruments will be added regularly to complete the research on square piano history.


Instruments


Johannes Zumpe for Longman and Lukey & Co. 1769

This little square piano from the beginning of the company Longman & Broderip is one of the rarest instruments - it is the only instrument signed by Zumpe so far and thus represents the only proof that Johannes Zumpe had also worked for Longman. The case is made of mahogan...

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Longman, Lukey and Co. 1769 – 1773

This is the second oldest instrument from the early years of Longman & Broderip in the Eric Feller Collection. The case is made of mahogany and framed with ribbon inlays. Left of the keyboard are three hand stops for divided dampers and lute. There is also a pedal/knee lever...

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Johann Christian Schreiber 1745 (1770)

This very interesting square piano is so far the only known instrument made by Johannes Christian Schreiber. The rectangular shaped mahogany case is decorated with boxwood inlays. The instrument has a single action and is double strung. The keyboard is made of ivory and ebo...

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Thomas Haxby 1774

This early square piano by Thomas Haxby was built in York in 1774 and belonged for many years to the Colt Collection in England. Haxby was considered an outstanding spinet and piano maker. The case of the instrument is made of mahogany with inlays in different woods. The instr...

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Georgius Pether c. 1775

This square piano is a typical example of the 1770s instruments in England. The delicate instrument convinces with simple elegance and a charming sound. The instrument rests on the original stand (trestle-stand). Both are made of mahogany with encircling inlays in different wo...

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Ferdinand Weber c. 1775

This square piano is one of the rare surviving instruments with a “Venetian Swell”. The case and the original stand are made of solid mahogany and framed with ribbon inlays. The stand has a small shelf ("music shelf") and is decorated with oval brass fittings. The lid is...

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Jacobus Ball c. 1775/80

This instrument is probably the earliest surviving square piano by Jacobus Ball. The case of this small instrument is made of mahogany with inlays in different woods. The instrument itself rests on a trestle stand made in cherry wood (not original). The keyboard is made in ivo...

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Longman and Broderip 1776 – 1782

One of the most important piano companies besides J. Broadwood in the late 18th century was Longman & Broderip. They acted as instrument dealers with instruments crafted by suppliers and as music publishers. One of these examples is this early square piano. The case and th...

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Johannes Pohlman 1767 (1780)

Johannes Pohlmann (later anglicised to "Pohlman") is one of the so-called "12 Apostles" of piano making in the late 18th century in England. These were instrument makers who left the continent after the Seven Years War in Germany to immigrate to England. For more information abou...

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Christopher Ganer 1780

The case of this little charming instrument is made of solid mahogany and richly decorated with inlaid ribbons. The original stand is decorated on the sides with bronze applications. The keyboard is made ivory and ebony. Inside the piano are three stops for bass dampers, trebl...

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Jacobus Ball c. 1780

The case of the instrument is made of solid mahogany and richly decorated with various inlays and inlaid decorative ribbons. The original stand with 6 legs is also made of mahogany and decorated with flowers, ornaments and garlands. The keyboard is made in ivory and ebony. Ins...

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Jacobus et Abraham Kirckman 1783

This instrument by the company of Kirckman from 1783 represents an early example of the production of pianos in the changing time from harpsichord to piano. Kirckman which was renowned in the 18th century for making harpsichords expanded in the mid-1770s to offer also the newly c...

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Christian Müller 1784

This unusual Swiss square piano was made in 1784 by Christian Müller in Bern. It shows some unusual characteristics and is probably the prototype for Muzio Clementi's (1752 – 1832) patent for the "Bridge of Reverberation", which was introduced about 25 years later in London. ...

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Joseph Hauert c. 1785

This rare square piano by the famous Swiss instrument maker family Hauert was built around 1785 by Joseph Hauert in Bern. The elegant instrument and the original legs with floral carvings are made of walnut. On the front of the lid are an inlaid oval which is made in a darker...

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Christopher Ganer c. 1785

Christopher Ganer was one of the "12 Apostles" mentioned in the literature who emigrated to England in the mid-1760s. This square piano shows the continuous development of the instruments towards the end of the 18th century. In comparison to the square piano from 1780 (click here...

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Schoene & Co. 1788

The case and the original stand are made in mahogany with inlays in different woods. The stand has got a cross brace on the floor with pedals and is decorated with oval brass fittings.The instrument has a second action and is double strung. The keys are made of ivory and ebony. T...

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Johann Christoph Jeckel and Christian Jeckel 1789

This early South German instrument from 1789 comes from the workshop of Johann Christoph and Christian Jeckel in Worms and is absolutely similar to the instrument from 1790 in the Metropolitan Museum in New York. The case of the instrument is made in various fruit woods (mainl...

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Shoehs 1790

This early French square pianoforte is made by an instrument maker who we do know nothing. So far, no other instrument has been found, so it is probably the only surviving instrument. The case and legs are made of mahogany and framed with simple inlays. The instrument has a si...

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Johannes Broadwood 1790

A very early example of John Broadwood's exquisite square pianos can be seen here. The case of the instrument is made of mahogany with encircling inlays in different woods. The instrument rests on the original trestle stand which has been made in mahogany too. Inside is the...

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John Crang Hancock c. 1790

This rare pianoforte from the period around 1785 - 1790 represents an absolute peculiarity: it is so far the only preserved instrument with a newly invented action by Hancock in a square piano. The case is made of mahogany with inlays of boxwood and ebony. The instruments rest...

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Schoene & Co. 1792

The case and the original stand are made in mahogany with inlays in different woods. The stand has got a cross brace on the floor with pedals and is decorated with oval brass fittings. The instrument has a second action and is double strung. The keys are made of ivory and ebony....

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Thomas Bates & Co. 1793

This square piano by Thomas Bates is an example of Bates' long traditional style of piano making until the 1790s. While other piano makers at this time tried to develop the piano with an extended compass or "modern" designs Bates continued in the tradition of the 1770s and 1780s....

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Schoene & Vinsen 1799

This is currently the youngest of 3 square pianos made by Schoene in the Eric Feller Early Keyboard Collection. All three instruments feature identically designed nameboards and signatures. Also action, dampers and swell are the same. These charming instruments are all well ma...

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John Broadwood and Son 1799

This square piano was made by John Broadwood and Son in 1799. It is totally similar to the one build one year later in the Eric Feller Collection. The case of the instrument is made of mahogany with revolving band inlays in different woods. The instrument itself rests on a "fr...

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Érard Frères et Co. 1800

This simple square piano was made by Érard Freres et Co. in Paris in 1800. The case with its original legs is made in mahogany with simple brass inlays. The nameboard is signed with: "Érard Frères et Co. Rue du Mail No. 37 à Paris 1800." The original keyboard with a co...

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John Broadwood and Son 1800

The instruments of John Broadwood were in the late 18th and early 19th centuries much sought after. As a result a large number of instruments were produced. The case of the instrument is made of mahogany with revolving band inlays in different woods. The instrument itself rest...

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Lambertij 1801

This charming and absolutely elegant square piano was made in Paris in 1801 and is the only known instrument of this maker. It has a fine and sustainable sound. The case is decorated with inlays and is (as well as the legs) made of mahogany. Unusual is that the legs are made a...

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Muzio Clementi 1803

This square piano from 1803 was made in the important workshop of composer, publisher and instrument maker Muzio Clementi. In addition to Broadwood, the instruments of Clementi were highly appreciated and distinguished by their special sound. Contemporaries have dubbed them the b...

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William Rolfe 1803

This square piano comes from the workshop of William Rolfe and shows an instrument of classical elegance, as it was favoured by the English upper class in the late 18th to the early 19th century. Special features of these instruments are the richly decorated nameboards with flowe...

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Clementi & Co. 1804

Instruments by Muzio Clementi were highly valued at the beginning of the 19th century and had a very high reputation. Among the preserved instruments there are almost instruments with a compass of 5 ½ octaves and double-action. This special square piano is unique because it is b...

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Érard Frères 1805

This very rare and elegant square piano was made by Érard Frères in Paris in 1804/1805. The case with its original legs is made in mahogany with inlays and original ormolu decorations around the case and legs. The nameboard is signed with: "Érard Frères Rue du Mail No....

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John Broadwood and Son 1807

The company of John Broadwood was one of the most prolific piano manufacturers in England in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Due to the partly industrial production large quantities have been achieved. However, the quantity did not affect the quality of the instruments an...

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Érard Frères 1811 owned by Jean-Jérôme Imbault

  This extraordinary square piano is an important historic instrument in music history, as it comes from the possession of the violinist and well-known publisher Jean-Jérôme Imbault. The instrument by Érard Frères was made in 1811 in Paris. The case and origina...

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Meincke & Pieter Meyer 1811 – 1818

Meincke & Pieter Meyer belonged to one of the best piano manufactories in the Netherlands at the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century. This square piano is one of the most elegant models and is totally different from the early typical English style instrument...

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John Broadwood and Sons 1814

This elegant "Regency-Style" square piano from 1814 is a typical early 19th century instrument found in very wealthy households. The case of the instrument is made of mahogany and rosewood with revolving band inlays in brass. The instrument stands on 6 original turned legs wit...

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Joseph Grus c. 1820

This square piano is a typical representative of the French Empire instruments from the beginning of the 19th century. The instrument was built around 1820 and impresses with its clear elegance and its fine sound. The case is made of mahogany and decorated with bronze applicat...

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Érard Frères 1822

This elegant little Empire piano by Érard Frères was made in Paris in 1822. The case of the instrument and the original legs are made of mahogany, decorated with inlays and elaborate bronzes. The nameboard is signed with: "Èrard Frères Facteurs de Forte-piano et Harpes du R...

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Jean-Henri Pape 1824

Jean-Henri Pape was one of the most innovative piano makers of his time at the beginning of the 19th century. A large number of patents to improve playing and sound were made by him. This elegant Empire piano was made in Paris in 1824. The case and original columnar legs are made...

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Charles Louis Howard c. 1825

This square piano was build by the famous Swiss instrument maker family Hauert and was made around 1825 in Bern. The case of the instrument and the original legs are made of mahogany. On the front at the lock is a fine bronze application. On the nameboard in a ceramic cartridge r...

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Léonard Systermans 1829

This small Empire square piano was made in Paris in 1829 by Léonard Systermans. The instrument convinced with its simple elegance and fine sound. The case and columnar legs are made of mahogany. The nameboard is slightly rounded and bears the inscription: "Leonard Systerman...

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Wilhelm Braschoss c. 1830

This elegant Swiss square piano from Geneva shows the French and English influence on instrument making in Switzerland. The instrument was built around 1830 and has a very overtone-rich sound.  The case and legs are made of mahogany. The typical fluted legs are reminiscent of...

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