DOUBLE MANUAL HARPSICHORD AFTER GOERMANS 1764 / TASKIN 1784. (Russell Collection, Edinburgh)

The Russell Collection Goermans/Taskin instrument is arguably the finest sounding late French harpsichord. It was built in 1764 by Jean or his son Jacques Geormans as a standard French double manual, and altered in 1783/4 in the workshop of Pascal Taskin, who added an extra (peau de buffle) register, knee levers in place of handstops, redecorating, and altering the rose to make the instrument appear as if it had originated in the workshop of Ioannes Couchet, a member of the Ruckers family. The instrument has the powerful bass associated with late French harpsichords and an especially fine treble, giving a clarity ideal for contrapuntal music, as well as being perfect for all French music. The case is of poplar, with yellow pine framing and bottom boards, gessoed and painted in traditional French style with gilded bands. The keyboards are of lime with arcaded fronts, ebony naturals and bone topped sharps, and the soundboard is of finest European spruce. Stringing is in red and yellow brass and iron. The instrument sits on a six leg fluted stand, or optionally a cabriole stand with skirt as on the original instrument. Both the original and altered dispositions are offered.


Compass FF-f3. Transposable. 2 x 8' 1 x 4' registers. The altered disposition has an extra row of jacks (peau de buffe) operating the same strings as the lower manual 8'. Upper manual slides to engage coupler. Dimensions 2362mm x 940mm x 279mm, weight approximately 70kg. Specific options include cabriole stand, painted soundboard, knee levers (genouliere), matching stool, carrying cover, chinoiserie case decoration, interior lid paintings all available.