GOTHIC HARPS

By the 13th/14th century European harps can perhaps be divided into two recognisable forms ~ the heavily built Gaelic harp and the more slender Romanesque or Gothic harp. The Gothic harp was widely used across Europe through to the end of the 16th/beginning of the 17th century. Strung in gut it has a much more mellow tone than the Gaelic harp and was used solo, with voice or lute and voice. The shallow soundbox, carved from one or two pieces of hardwood, was often shaped to give an oval cross section. These harps were usually fitted with bray pins, these are small angled wooden pegs which protrude from the soundboard, and which lightly touch the strings creating a buzz when they are plucked. This produces a fascinating effect which excites the upper harmonics of the notes and was much admired during the instruments' heyday. Mersenne, writing in 1636, tells us that by his time brays (or harpions in French) were no longer in common use.
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To hear sound clips of my harps, click on the link on my links page.

Please ask about similar harps made to your specification.

Based on surviving instruments in Eisenach and Leipzig and iconographical sources.
  • 26 gut strings, tuned C - g"
  • Height :150cm approx
  • Bray pins
  • Hollowed out soundbox, oval section - £3165
  • Square section also possible
  • 26 gut strings, tuned F - c'''
  • Height: 115cm approx
  • Bray pins
  • Hollowed out soundbox, oval section - £2600
  • Square section also possible
  • SEMITONES AVAILABLE ON THIS MODEL
  • 24 gut strings, tuned G - b"
  • Height : 115cm approx
  • Bray pins
  • Hollowed out soundbox, oval section - £2400
  • Square section also possible
  • SEMITONES AVAILABLE ON THIS MODEL
  • 22 gut strings, tuned c - c'''
  • Height: 110cm approx
  • Bray pins
  • Hollowed out soundbox, oval section, - £2200
  • Square section also possible
  • 19 nylon strings, tuned f - c'''
  • Height : 95cm approx
  • Bray pins
  • Oval or half square carved box & gut strings also possible
    Price on application
  • 17 nylon strings, tuned g - b"
  • Height : 80cm approx
    Price
    on application
Notation : C" - C' - C - c - c' - c" - c"'

c' = middle c

Colouring of white woods is available for all harps from £100 depending on the size of the instrument in question.

Cases are available on request and prices will vary according to instrument.