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date: 02 June 2020

Organ (Fr. orgue, orgues; Dutch, Ger. Orgel; It., Sp. organo; Dan. Orglet; from Gk. organon via Lat. organum)locked

  • Barbara Owen,
  • Peter Williams
  •  and Stephen Bicknell

Extract

(Fr. orgue, orgues; Dutch, Ger. Orgel; It., Sp. organo; Dan. Orglet; from Gk. organon via Lat. organum)

A wind instrument consisting of one or more scale-like rows of individual pipes of graded size which are made to sound by air under pressure directed from a wind-raising device and admitted to the pipes by means of valves operated from a keyboard. Although this definition could include such instruments as the Regals, Portative, Positive and Claviorgan, this article is concerned with the larger organ proper.

The organ is, together with the clock, the most complex of all mechanical instruments developed before the Industrial Revolution. Among musical instruments its history is the most involved and wide-ranging, and its extant repertory the oldest and largest (see Keyboard music; see also Continuo). Despite its essentially indirect and therefore relatively inflexible production of sound, no other instrument has inspired such avowed respect as the organ, ‘that great triumph of human skill … the most perfect musical instrument’ (Grove1), ‘in my eyes and ears … the king of instruments’ (Mozart, letter to his father, 17–...

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Anuario musical
Journal of the British Institute of Organ Studies
Svensk tidskrift för musikforskning
Foix, Bibliothèque Municipale
Musical Opinion
Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France
M. Mersenne: Harmonie universelle
Hinrichsen's Musical Year Book
P. Williams: A New History of the Organ: from the Greeks to the Present Day (London, 1980)
Besançon, Bibliothèque Municipale
Faenza, Biblioteca Comunale Manfrediana, Raccolte Musicali
S. Bicknell: The History of the English Organ (Cambridge, 1996)
Studia musicologica Academiae scientiarum hungaricae
Revue musicale
Revue de musicologie
Journal of the American Musical Instrument Society
M. Praetorius: Syntagma musicum, i (Wittenberg and Wolfenbüttel, 1614-15, 2/1615/R); ii (Wolfenbüttel, 1618, 2/1619/R; Eng. trans., 1986, 2/1991); iii (Wolfenbüttel, 1618, 2/1619/R)
Allgemeine (deutsche) Musik-Zeitung/Musikzeitung (1874-1943)
Musical Times
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
J. Hawkins: A General History of the Science and Practice of Music (London, 1776)
E.J. Hopkins and E.F. Rimbault: The Organ: its History and Construction (London, 1855, 3/1887/R)
S. Virdung: Musica getutscht (Basle, 1511/R)