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Article

Mark Hoffman

(b Hanau, June 20, 1839; d Hanau, Jan 13, 1900). German acoustician, son of Georg Appunn. At the Leipzig Conservatory he continued the acoustical experiments of his father, especially the determination of vibration ratios of very high tones by optical means, and constructed fine acoustic apparatus. He devised a new shape for the glockenspiel, with right-angled metal rods in a circular arrangement and a metal half-sphere above as a resonator....

Article

(b Hanau, Sept 1, 1816; d Hanau, Jan 14, 1888). German musical theorist and acoustician. He studied theory with Anton André and Schnyder von Wartensee, the piano with Suppus and Alois Schmitt, the organ with Rinck and the cello with Mangold. He became a well-rounded musician who could play almost every instrument. Until ...

Article

R.W.B. Stephens

revised by Clive Greated

(b Budapest, June 3, 1899; d Cambridge, MA, June 13, 1972). Hungarian acoustician. He studied at the universities of Berne and Budapest, where he took the PhD (1923). He taught at the University of Budapest until 1947, and was engaged in research with the Hungarian telephone service concerning the mechanical behaviour of the ear, work which led to a revision of the theory of hearing. He later worked on physiological acoustics at Harvard University, and is the only acoustician to have obtained a Nobel Prize. Békésy studied the acoustics of the ear, sometimes by direct microscopic observation through tiny holes bored into the bony wall of the cochlea. He made fundamental discoveries about the operation of the inner ear and the way in which it responds to complex sounds; these discoveries are described with great lucidity in his book Experiments in Hearing (New York, 1960)....

Article

Malcolm Turner

(b Bautzen, June 18, 1870; d Bautzen, Jan 4, 1941). German acoustician. After studying at the Dresden Conservatory he became Stadtkantor at Bautzen from 1898 to 1914 (from 1908 with the title of director of church music), where he organized music festivals in 1905, 1907 and 1912. He then went on to study acoustics, especially the acoustics of bells, in which field he was a pioneer, at the Technische Hochschule, Dresden. From 1916 he taught acoustics at the Technische Hochschule, Berlin, becoming professor in 1922. Meanwhile in 1918 he took up a lectureship in church music at the University of Berlin, and in 1920 became adviser on church bells and organs to the Prussian Ministry of Culture. In 1927 he set up the Institut Biehle, under the auspices of the University and the Technische Hochschule, Berlin, for the study of church buildings, organs, bells and acoustics. Further information is given in E.M. Müller, ed.: ...

Article

E.D. Mackerness

(b London, July 13, 1846; d London, Dec 29, 1936). English acoustician. He was principally noted for his design and manufacture of wind instruments. He had a long career with the firm of Boosey & Hawkes and when Boosey’s took over the business of Henry Distin in 1868, Blaikley was appointed works manager. He became widely known as an authority on woodwind and brass, and in 1874 devised a system of compensating pistons (patented in 1878) which Boosey & Co. adopted (see Valve). The firm continued to use equipment designed by him until the late 1980s. Blaikley also devised other improvements for trumpets, horns and trombones. In 1875 he joined the (Royal) Musical Association and in 1878 read the first of many papers to that society. This highly technical discussion of resonance was followed by others on such subjects as quality of tone in wind instruments (...

Article

Murray Campbell

(Pierre Maxime)

(b Paris, Nov 16, 1866; d Toulouse, Nov 15, 1953). French physicist and acoustician. He studied physics at the Sorbonne (1883) and at the Ecole Normale Supérieure (1885–8). After teaching at the Collège de France and the Lycée at Agen, in 1892 Bouasse joined the staff of the University of Toulouse and obtained his doctorate in mathematics. In 1897 he gained the degree of doctorate in physical sciences and was appointed to the physics chair at Toulouse, where he remained for the rest of his academic career. Retiring in 1937, he continued to work in his laboratory until two years before his death. His research interests ranged widely and he made many discoveries of great importance to musical acoustics. In particular, his studies of woodwind and brass instruments provided the essential foundation for the modern understanding of how sound is generated in these instruments. Bouasse's work has been unjustly neglected outside France, partly because he published little in conventional journals. Instead, he wove his own theories and experiments into a 45-volume library of textbooks on classical physics, the ...

Article

Murray Campbell

(Michael)

(b London, August 26, 1933). English physicist and acoustician. He obtained a BSc in physics from Imperial College, London, later gaining the doctorate there with research into high-amplitude stress waves. After holding a research fellowship at the electronic music laboratory of the Canadian National Research Council in Ottawa, he worked for five years in the acoustics section of the UK National Physical Laboratory, where he carried out research on the psycho-acoustic perception of short duration and very low frequency sounds. In 1966 he was appointed to a lectureship in acoustics at the University of Surrey, where, in collaboration with colleagues in the US, Europe, Israel and Australia, he established a group which became noted for its research into the acoustics of wind instruments and their subjective assessment. He played a major part in the establishment there of the Tonmeister course in music and applied physics. An accomplished trombonist, his most notable research has been in the acoustics of brass instruments, where he supplemented and elucidated physical measurements by applying psychological testing procedures to the assessment of brass instrument tone quality. He developed a non-invasive technique which allows the bore of an instrument to be reconstructed by injecting acoustic pulses into one end and recording the reflections....

Article

C. Truesdell

revised by Clive Greated

(Florenz Friedrich)

(b Wittenberg, Nov 30, 1756; d Breslau [now Wrocław], April 3, 1827). German acoustician. He studied law at Leipzig University before turning to scientific studies. He invented two instruments, the ‘euphon’ and the ‘klavizylinder’, both of which were variants of the glass harmonica. However, he owes his fame to his celebrated experiments on the nodal patterns and corresponding frequencies of vibration plates. He showed that the vibration patterns, often called Chladni figures, could be made visible by sprinkling sand on the plate. The sand is thrown up on vibrating areas and collects around nodal lines. Chladni travelled through Europe playing on his instruments and demonstrating his experiments before many persons and institutions; he encountered Goethe, Lichtenberg, Olbers, Laplace, Napoleon and other notable men of the period. Chladni's experiments stimulated much early work on the vibration of plates and bars and indeed so impressed the Académie des Sciences, Paris, that it offered a prize for a successful explanation of his sand figures and the motion of elastic surfaces in general. His work helped to form the foundation of modern theories, capable of predicting precise vibration patterns for violin and guitar top plates and the soundboards of keyboard instruments....

Article

Murray Campbell

(Winfried)

(b Munich, Aug 16, 1905; d Miesbach, Oct 16, 1990). German acoustician. He studied mechanical and electrical engineering at the Technical University of Berlin, gaining his doctorate in 1932 for a thesis on sound absorption by porous surfaces. Cremer subsequently engaged in acoustical research at the Technical University and the Heinrich Hertz Institute in Berlin. In 1945 he obtained a teaching post at the University of Munich, and in 1946 established an acoustical consultancy firm in Munich. He was appointed director of the Institut für Technische Akustik at the Technical University in 1954 and of the acoustics division of the Heinrich Hertz Institute in 1955. Retiring in 1973, he remained active in teaching and research until his death. Cremer made many important contributions to the solution of practical problems in noise control and building acoustics. He was acoustics consultant for a number of major halls including the Berlin Philharmonie, the Sydney Opera House and the Madrid Concert Hall. A skilled amateur pianist and violinist, in the 1930s he was an enthusiastic exponent of the trautonium, an early electronic instrument. Cremer later became interested in violin acoustics and was one of the leading figures in the Catgut Acoustical Society. His book ...

Article

Rudolf A. Rasch

(b Buitenzorg [now Bogor], Java, Aug 17, 1887; d Beekbergen, Sept 24, 1972). Dutch physicist and acoustician. He took the doctorate in physics in 1913 at the University of Leiden, and studied with Einstein in Zürich, Rutherford in Manchester and Bragg in Leeds. He taught physics at Delft Gymnasium (1921–3) and Technical College (1923–7), and was Lorentz's assistant (1927) and director of the physics section (1928–55) at Teyler’s Stichting, Haarlem, concurrently occupying the chair founded by this institute at Leiden (1928–55). During these years Fokker became one of the foremost physicists in the Netherlands, and with the suspension of academic activity under the German occupation he turned to problems of musical aesthetics, his chief interests being the theories of Euler and Christiaan Huygens. He constructed two pipe organs, one (1943) with just intonation scales according to the principles of Euler’s ...

Article

Hans Heinrich Eggebrecht

(b Dresden, June 18, 1909; d Bad Reichenhall, June 13, 1997). German acoustician. After attending the Technische Hochschule in Dresden (1928–9), he studied at the universities of Kiel, Tübingen and Berlin (where he was a pupil of Biehle). His work with M. Grützmacher and Gurlitt during this period stimulated his later research. In 1935 he received a doctorate in physics at the University of Berlin with a dissertation on reed pipes. From 1936 to 1945 he worked first in the State Institute of Physics and Technology in Berlin-Charlottenburg and later was independently employed in the physics department of Tübingen University. In 1952 he began work in the Federal Institute of Physics and Technology in Brunswick, becoming administrative adviser in 1953, chief adviser and head of the acoustics laboratory in 1956, and in 1968 professor and director of the institute. He retired in 1971.

Lottermoser conducted extensive research into the acoustics of instruments, especially the organ and violin, and into the physiology of hearing them. Through his articles on differing architectural styles in churches he contributed to the study and improvement of spatial acoustics....

Article

William Waterhouse

(b Brussels, March 10, 1841; d St Jean-Cap Ferrat, June 17, 1924). Belgian organologist, acoustician and wind instrument maker. He was the son of the maker C.B. Mahillon , with whom he collaborated from 1865. In 1877 he accepted the curatorship of the newly created Musée Instrumental du Conservatoire Royal de Musique in Brussels. Over the next half-century he systematically built up the collection to become the largest and most important of its kind in the world with over 3300 items. These he proceeded to catalogue meticulously, publishing five volumes that set new standards of scholarship for his time. He prefaced the first volume (1880) with an ‘Essai de classification méthodique de tous les instruments anciens et modernes’, the first attempt to formulate a systematic classification of musical instruments. Though this scheme has since been slightly revised, notably by Hornbostel and Sachs in 1914, it remains essentially valid today. For these achievements, he has been hailed as ‘truly the Father of Organology’ (Baines). The author of several authoritative texts on acoustics and practical aspects of wind instruments, his interests also covered many other fields: for the authentic performance of early music he built pioneering prototypes of oboe d’amore, basset-horn and high trumpet. He reproduced rare models of historic woodwind instruments (many obsolete) for his own and for other collections. He took out various patents (some in collaboration with other family members) for improvements to woodwinds and brass and also officiated at a number of international trade exhibitions. In ...

Article

Murray Campbell

(b Brunswick, March 16, 1933). German acoustician. In 1957 he enrolled in the Technical University of Brunswick as a student of electronics and music, becoming a research scientist in the acoustics laboratory at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt in Brunswick in 1958. In 1960 he was awarded the doctorate by the Technical University for a dissertation on the behaviour of organ flue pipes, supervised by Martin Grützmacher. Meyer was appointed head of the acoustics laboratory in 1971, and under his direction the laboratory established an international reputation in musical instrument acoustics, room acoustics and psychoacoustics. At the Musikhochschule in Detmold he became a lecturer (1968) and professor (1980); in 1985 he became head of the audio acoustics department at the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt in Brunswick, retiring in 1996. A skilled violinist and conductor, his musical background has informed his research on the influence of acoustics on performance. Meyer has carried out definitive studies of the directional properties of instruments and the platform placing of orchestral groups. He has also given numerous public lectures involving acoustical demonstrations by live orchestras. President of the German Acoustical Society between ...

Article

Murray Campbell and Clive Greated

(Johannes )

(b Schiebroek, Netherlands, July 31, 1932). Dutch physicist and acoustician. At Delft University he obtained a degree in technical physics (1956) and took the PhD (1969). The major part of his professional career has been spent at TNO (Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research). He is an accomplished jazz clarinettist. His most important contribution has been to the fundamental acoustics of woodwind instruments. In aiming to find more rational design procedures, he has made a comprehensive theoretical analysis of the resonance of tubes, incorporating the effects of side holes, bends, mouthpieces and reeds. This allows detailed calculations to be made of the hole positions in a woodwind instrument and predictions to be made about aspects of tuning and tone quality. His findings are presented in Acoustical Aspects of Woodwind Instruments, which has become a standard text for designers of woodwind instruments.

‘New Key Mechanism for Clarinet’, ...

Article

Melita Milin

(b Belgrade, Sept 5, 1932). Serbian composer, multimedia artist, and music theorist. He is an original creative personality with an outstanding output in several artistic areas: music, plastic arts, literature, new media, and multimedia of a kind he calls ‘synthesic art’. He studied composition at the Music Academy in Belgrade, in the class of Milenko Živković, graduating in 1956. He taught theoretical subjects at the Stanković Music School until 1971, when he founded the Electronic Studio at Radio Belgrade which he directed until 1999. Later he taught post-graduate courses on multimedia arts at the University of Arts in Belgrade (2000–12). Together with some other artists he founded the artistic group Mediala (1958) that was to play an important part on the domestic art scene, and the avant-garde magazine Rock (1969). He worked in experimental studios in Warsaw (1966), Paris (...

Article

Patrizio Barbieri

(b Castelfranco Veneto, nr Treviso, Feb 25, 1709; d Treviso, July 20, 1790). Italian music theorist and acoustician. He studied with his father, the mathematician Jacopo Giordano, and at the University of Padua. In 1733 he withdrew to the family estates in Castelfranco Veneto and Treviso where he worked independently of the academic world. An amateur musician (singer, harpsichordist and violinist), he taught G.B. Bortolani (‘il Melani’) and Ignazio Spergher.

Riccati preceded Rameau in formulating a theory of the origin of the tonal scale in the triads based on the first, fourth and fifth degrees. He sent the document in which he claims to have made the discovery to F.A. Vallotti; its authenticity is confirmed by Vallotti’s reply dated 13 January 1735. In this document Riccati examines the numbering of the chords with which Vallotti accompanied the diatonic scale in his compositions, showing that they are simply the consonant triads based on the first, fourth and fifth degrees of the scale. Riccati also tries to give a rational justification for the harmonic identity between a chord and its inversions. As opposed to Rameau’s strict methodology based on Enlightenment ideas, Riccati based his ‘experiment’ on compositions by the great masters; his is substantially an empirical theory. In ...

Article

C. Truesdell

revised by Murray Campbell

(b La Flèche, March 24, 1653; d Paris, July 9, 1716). French acoustician. In 1670 he went to Paris, where he attended the lectures of the Cartesian physicist Rohault; his works do not display the knowledge of advanced mathematics that characterizes the scientific progress of the age of Newton, although he held a chair of mathematics for a decade. He was elected to membership of the Académie des Sciences (1696), which left him free to develop his interest in acoustics. He thoroughly mastered the idea of frequency and was the first to interpret beats correctly. He also introduced the terms ‘acoustique’ (acoustics), ‘son harmonique’ (harmonic sound) and ‘noeud’ (node). His papers, though not so original as he may have thought them, were fairly clear and descriptive; they were very widely read, and certainly they had great effect upon the centrally important work of Daniel Bernoulli a quarter of a century later. He suffered from a speech defect and is said to have had no ear for music. His works include ...

Article

Erich Tremmel

(b Ingolstadt, Feb 16, 1803; d Munich, Feb 25, 1890). German scientist, acoustician, inventor and writer on music . He moved to Munich in 1827 where he met the flute virtuoso and maker Theobald Boehm, with whom he shared a life-long friendship; Schafhäutl’s studies of theoretical and practical acoustics informed many of Boehm’s improvements to musical instruments, including the cylindrical metal flute (1846) and, later, the oboe and bassoon. In about 1833 their first invention, the Teliophon (a pianoforte with a rounded belly) was stolen and shortly afterwards patented in London; the ensuing lawsuit brought them to England in early 1834. While there Schafhäutl began to work on metallurgical experiments; meanwhile he corresponded for the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung, writing accounts of English organ making, church music and the 1835 York festival.

After his return to Bavaria in 1841, Schafhäutl became professor of geology, mining and metallurgy at Munich university. With Caspar Ett he engaged in the debate about the reform of Catholic church music, gradually shifting his support from the cause of musical historicism, based on the traditions of unaccompanied vocal polyphony, to become a passionate defender of Classical orchestral masses against the polemical attacks of F.X. Witt....

Article

Kevin Mooney

(b Montjoie [now Monschau], Nov 11, 1777; d Krefeld, Nov 20, 1837). German acoustician. He was a silk manufacturer in Krefeld, and had a lifelong interest in acoustics. He is best known for his proposal to the Stuttgart Congress of Physicists in 1834 that the pitch a′ have a standard frequency of 440 Hz (this being the mean of contemporary Viennese pianos); a′ 440 has consequently been called ‘the Stuttgart pitch’. Scheibler also developed a ‘tonometer’ consisting of 52 tuning-forks, each tuned to beat about four times a second with its higher and lower neighbours (beat frequencies were first treated systematically by Sauveur in 1701); this apparatus, now lost, is described in his Der physikalische und musikalische Tonmesser (Essen, 1834). A 56-fork tonometer spanning the octave a=220 to a′=440 did survive and was described by Ellis (Helmholtz/Ellis, 1885).

Using the tonometer, Scheibler was able to manufacture tuning-forks for all 13 pitches in the equal tempered octave ...

Article

Albert Wellek and Berthold Freudenberger

(b Wiesentheid, April 21, 1848; d Berlin, Dec 25, 1936). German acoustician and musicologist. Both his parents were musical, and at his various schools he learnt to play six instruments, teaching himself harmony and counterpoint. From 1865 he studied philosophy (with Brentano) and theology at Würzburg University, and philosophy and natural sciences at Göttingen University, where he took the doctorate and in 1870 completed the Habilitation in philosophy. He was professor of philosophy at the universities of Würzburg (1873), Prague (1879), Halle (1884), Munich (1889) and Berlin (1893–1928), where he founded (1893) and directed the Psychologisches Institut and the Berlin Phonogrammarchiv (1900). His many well-known pupils included Hornbostel and Abraham, with whom he founded and directed the Phonogrammarchiv, Sachs, Lachmann, Schünemann and the writer Robert Musil. He founded and edited the journal Beiträge zur Akustik und Musikwissenschaft...