The third volume in The Historical Harpsichord-Essays in Honor of Frank Hubbard series contains two studies of major importance. The name Bartolomeo Cristofori is immediately identified with the invention of the pianoforte, a harpsichord with a hammer action that can play loudly and softly. Indeed, Cristofori was an innovative builder of harpsichords of various types, as is fully described and illustrated in Bartolomeo Cristofori as Harpsichord Maker by Dr. Hubert Henkel, of the Deutsche Museum in Munich. He was formerly Director of the Musical Instrument Museum of the University of Leipzig, which contains a wealth of Cristofori instruments.
Denzil Wraight's essay, The Identification and Authentication of Italian Stringed Keyboard Instruments, discusses methods by which unsigned harpsichords, as well as those with false inscriptions, can be authoritatively ascribed to known makers. Moulding profiles printed on acetate sheets will be provided for illustrative overlay comparisons.
Review-Both monographs represent significant contributions to the history of the harpsichord and continue the high standards of paractical scholarship established earlier in the series. Edward L. Kottick, Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society, vol. XX 1994)