Musical instrument covers and their makers in eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain and Ireland

Taylor, Clare (2024). Musical instrument covers and their makers in eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain and Ireland. Galpin Society Journal, 2024 (In press).

Abstract

This article not only demonstrates the links to London’s eighteenth-century gilt leather makers, who made covers for early keyboard instruments, but also discusses extant examples of covers in Ireland supplied for a grand piano and a pedal harp respectively. The detailed analysis offered of these objects shows that they had practical functions, protecting from the effects of light, heat and humidity and also in the case of the harp controlling access. However, it also demonstrates that they had aesthetic functions, harmonising with leather covers on other items of cased furniture and even interiors themselves, enabling musical instruments to be seen as an integral part of a decorative scheme.

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