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Guitar

Guitar

  • Place of origin:

    Italy (Made)

  • Date:

    1700-1800 (Made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown (Made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    wooden [rosewood?] ribs with ivory stringing on back and sides; pine soundboard with ebony and ivory inlay to surround of rose; wood and paper rose.

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs Sigismund Goetze in memory of her husbamd.

  • Museum number:

    W.7-1940

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This instrument was at one time converted into a chitarra battente, a wire-strung guitar, with a bent soundboard and strummed with a plectrum. It was given to the Museum in 1940 by Constance, the widow of the painter Sigismund Goetze (1866-1839). He may have used it as an artist's prop, like the chitarrone (Museum number W.6-1940), which also belonged to him.

Physical description

'Vaulted back of eighteen ribs [of rosewood?] with intervening ivory stringing. The sides are similarly built but the stringing of sides and backs does not meet correctly. Belly of two pieces of pine with a slight bend inwards in the lower part, rather roughly executed. A complex wood and paper rose surrounded by chequered decoration of ivory and ebony inlay. The fixed bridge, with grooves for strings which pass over it, replaces an earlier bridge. There are five hitch nails at the base of the body for attachment of the strings. The neck has eleven ivory frets topped with brass, and an extra fret has been added on the belly. The head, later than the body, has fourteen small pegs, for five courses of wire strings, the first double, the rest triple.' Anthony Baines, Catalogue of Musical Instruments in the Victoria and Albert Museum - Part II: Non-keyboard instruments (London, 1998), p. 59.

Place of Origin

Italy (Made)

Date

1700-1800 (Made)

Artist/maker

Unknown (Made)

Materials and Techniques

wooden [rosewood?] ribs with ivory stringing on back and sides; pine soundboard with ebony and ivory inlay to surround of rose; wood and paper rose.

Dimensions

Length: 89 cm total length, Length: 44 cm body, Depth: 10 cm maximum, Width: 19.5 cm width of upper bout, Width: 17.5 cm width of middle bout, Width: 24.5 cm width of lower bout

Object history note

This instrument was presented to the Museum in 1940 by Constance Goetze in memory of her late husband, the painter Sigismund Goetze (Nominal File MA.1/G982). Sigismund Christian Hubert Goetze (1866-1939) was British painter, best known for the mural scheme he executed at the Foreign Office 1912-1921, on the subject of the British Empire. He had earlier given a sixteenth-century form or bench (W.78-1924) to the Museum.

Descriptive line

Rosewood ribs with ivory stringing, Italian, 1700 - 1800. (Case for this disposed of in 1963 (RF 1963/1668); given to the Horniman Museum.)

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Anthony Baines: Catalogue of Musical Instruments in the Victoria and Albert Museum - Part II: Non-keyboard instruments. (London, 1998), p. 59.

Materials

Ebony; Ivory; Paper

Techniques

Planing; Joining; Stringing

Categories

Musical instruments

Collection

Furniture and Woodwork Collection

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