Broadwood c 1820

  This elegant Broadwood dates from the end of the Regency, and will soon be celebrating its 200th birthday.  It was restored by Michael Parfett in Clerkenwell about 15 years ago, and the owner assures us that it remains in good playing order.  

  We see that the restoration was carefully done.  For a few years around and just after 1820, Broadwoods moved the treble tuning pins from the row along the back to a position at the right-hand end.  This arrangement does make tuning of these top notes easier, because the lid does not get in the way so much. This is one of the first pianos to adopt the idea.  This piano still has the undivided bridge and lighter stringing (open-covered in the bass) so we may expect that it has a relatively 'early' sound.

  The serial number is unfortunately somewhat worn, but it just might be 246??, which would indeed be correct for an 1820 piano.

  We see that the top four dampers are not present, but this could be deliberate.  The top section ('Additional keys) is undamped anyway, as are the top notes on all modern pianos.  This leaves the strings free to vibrate sympathetically, which does enhance the tone.  However, Friends of Square Pianos may be able to find some spare dampers if the new owner wishes to complete the run.  

  The owner has also mentioned that there is a small piece of veneer missing at the back left-hand corner.  Depending on the placement of the piano, this might not be visible, but again FoSP will be happy to provide a piece of contemorary saw-cut veneer.

    The piano is in Whitechapel, London.  The price is £1,500, which is surely very reasonable for a recently fully-restored piano.  Please contact the owner, Tim Whittaker


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© David Hackett