Anonymous Glass Harmonica

Type: Glass Harmonica

Collection: Kolthoorn Collection

Geography: Unknown

Dimensions (cm): L=40 W=119 H=89

Current location: On display at Posthoornkerk, Amsterdam

Additional information

Pedals: none

Context: The glass harmonica was invented by Benjamin Franklin who was inspired by musical glasses which held different volumes of water and when rubbed with wet fingers produced varying notes. Franklin's first glass harmonica was produced in 1761 in which glass bowls of varying sizes were placed on a central rod with the rim of the bowls slightly overlapping. A trough of water was placed beneath the glasses so when the rod was turned the glass would dip into the water to remain wet for the musician. This was a popular instrument in Europe, so much so that Beethoven and Mozart composed music to be played by this this type of instrument.

Geelvinck collections overview