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Clavichord - predecessor of the piano

tool : Clavichord - predecessor of the piano

KLAVIKORD (late Lat. Clavichordium, from Latin clavis - key and Greek. Χορδή - string) - a small keyboard string percussion musical instrument - is one of the predecessors of the piano.

Clavichord is like a piano

Outwardly, the clavichord is like a piano. Its components are also a case with a keyboard and four stands. However, the similarities end there. Clavichord's sound was extracted thanks to tangential mechanics. What was such a mechanism "> Depending on where the tangent touched, the same string could make a sound of different heights.

The content of the article

  • Clavichords were of two types:
  • History and form
  • Composers and Clavichord

Clavichords were of two types:

  • those who used the same string for different tones - the so-called linked clavichords - the tangents of 2-3 keys acted on one string (for example, in clavichord with 46 keys the number of strings was 22-26);
  • those in which for each individual tone (key) its own string is assigned - “free” clavichords - in them each key corresponds to a special string.

(A / B) keys; (1A / 1B) tangents (metal); (2A / 2B) keys; (3) a string (more precisely, its sounding part when a tangent hits); (4) resonant deck; (5) pegs; (6) damper

Sometimes the lower octave of the clavichord was shortened - partially diatonic. The warmth and expressiveness, tenderness and delicacy of the sound of the instrument are determined by a special method of sound extraction - a careful, as if creeping touch of a key. By slightly shaking the pressed key (connected to the string), it was possible to give the sound a vibration. This technique has become a characteristic performing way of playing the clavichord, which was not possible on other keyboard instruments.

History and form

The clavichord is one of the oldest keyboard instruments and comes from the ancient monochord. The name “clavichord” was first mentioned in documents of 1396, and the oldest preserved instrument was created in 1543 by Domenicus Pisaurensis and is now in the Leipzig Museum of Musical Instruments.

Clavichord was common in all European countries. Initially, it had the shape of a rectangular box and when playing lay on the table.
Later, the case was equipped with legs. The size of the clavichord ranged from small (octave) book-shaped instruments to relatively large, with a body up to 1.5 meters long. The number of octaves was initially only two and a half, but since the middle of the XVI century it has increased to four, and later on it was already equal to five octaves.

Composers and Clavichord

For clavichord, works were created by such great composers as I.S. Bach, his son K.F.E. Bach, V.A. Mozart and even L. van Beethoven (although at the time of the latter, pianoforte became increasingly fashionable - an instrument that Beethoven really liked). Because of its relatively quiet sound, the clavichord was used primarily in home life and in the early 19th century. finally replaced the piano.

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