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date: 22 November 2019


  • Anne Beetem Acker


Type of British upright piano. The first known mention appears in an advertisement by Longman & Clementi in the 26 October 1799 Morning Post, where it is described as ‘a small elegant upright piano-forte, with drum and triangle, ad libitum.’ Dussek’s Sonata in B♭ for the Microchordon, op.45, published about 1800 by Muzio Clementi & Co., is titled ‘A Favorite Sonata for the Microchordon, or Piano Forte With Drum and Triangle (ad libitum)’. The same title page remarks ‘N.B. The above instrument was invented by Mr Southwell of Dublin and is called a Camerachord.’ This instrument was probably a type of upright piano with janissary drum and bell operated by a pedal, invented by William Southwell. An example of such a Southwell piano, dated 21 June 1800, is in a private collection in London.

The name ‘microchordon’ came to be commonly associated with a six-octave upright piano made by Collard & Collard in the 1850s and 60s, sized between the piccolo and cottage upright pianos. The piano maker Charles Cadby advertised a microchordon upright in ...

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