Antique English square piano on stand, late 18th cent.

For sale is a late 18th century English mahogany line inlaid square pianoforte on a stand, with ivory keys. It is a common type of English period piano that was intended for domestic, amateur music making, The maker, George Pether (who is known to have been active between 1775 and 1794 in London), built both harpsichords and square pianos. The inscription "From Mr. Kirkmans" seems to indicate that he worked for the famous Kirkman family of English harpsichord builders, probably Abrahim (d. 1794) or his son Joseph the Elder, both very famous and active in the late 18th century in London.

Additional interesting information provided by Martha Novak Clinkscale, noted author of Makers of the Piano, Volume 1: 1700-1820 (Oxford University Press 1993 and 1999):

"...may be the only extant Pether besides the one (cat. 142) in the Musikinstrumenten-Museum in Leipzig. The Leipzig piano has only 4 1/2 octaves, vs. this one which is 5 full octaves.

The action has been rebuilt and it is playable, more or less. All notes strike and sound. Presently it is in approximate tune. We never attempted to fine-tune it but believe it could be done since the action and soundboard were rebuilt. (It does come with a tuning key.) It has two damping levers. It is on what I believe is a replaced base. The finish is fair, and some of the
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