Label :
Serial Number:
Date of Manufacture:
ca. 1790 - 1840
C basso (low pitch)
Mouthpipe Socket:
Bell Flare:
Bell Throat:
Bell Diameter:
Base Metal:
brass with nickel silver trim
raw brass

Pitched in baroque C-basso (approximately modern B-natural) this horn fits neither the French standard key of D nor the German standards of Bb or Eb for hunting horns. Horns such as these were used for signalling during the hunt. The large diameter permitted the horn to be slung over the huntsmans shoulder while on horseback.

At 66 cm. in diameter it is slightly larger than the similar French Dauphine designed by Marquis de Dampierre in 1729. The stamp AS on the mouthpipe sleeve is perhaps a makers marque and is also found on woodwind instruments in the late eighteenth century but their origins have not been firmly established. This sleeve appears to be made of nickel-silver, which came into general use in the nineteenth century. A similar alloy, however, was produced as early as 1770 in Suhl, Thuringen, Germany home of the famous hunting gun maker, J.P. Sauer und Sohn (est. 1751). A wind instrument maker by the name of Anton Saur was known in Wasserburg am Inn, Bavaria (some 372 km from Suhl). His license as Instrumentenmacher expired in 1815 and he is thought to have died or quit by 1810. (Coincidentally a basset horn marked A.S. is found in the Germanishes Nationalmuseum, Nrnberg, midway between the Suhl and Wasserberg.) The horn shows evidence of expert repairs in the form of very fine crack filling. Horns of this type were made in Germany as late as the second quarter of the nineteenth century.


Waterhouse, William. The New Langwill Index, A Dictionary of Musical Wind-Instrument Makers and Inventors. London: Tony Bingham, 1993. ISBN0-946113-04-1


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