• Twenty rooms: The private coll auction at Christies

    Sale 2857

    Twenty rooms: The private collection of the late Mrs Elias-Vaes

    27 - 29 April 2010, Amsterdam

  • Lot 985

    A PARCEL-GILT, EBONISED, GILTWOOD AND GILT-GESSO HARP

    BY SEBASTIAN ERARD (1752-1831), LONDON

    Price Realised  

    A PARCEL-GILT, EBONISED, GILTWOOD AND GILT-GESSO HARP
    BY SEBASTIAN ERARD (1752-1831), LONDON
    OF TYPICAL FORM, WITH EIGHT PEDALS, INSCRIBED SEBASTIAN ERARD'S/PATENT N 2432 GREAT MARLBOROUGH STREET, LONDON AND MAKER./TO H.R.H. THE PRINCESS CHARLOTTE OF WALES./TO HIS/MOST CHRISTIAN MAJESTY THE KING OF FRANCE./AND H.J. MOTHE, THE EMPEROR OF ALL THE RUSSIANS
    170 CM. HIGH


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    SEBASTIAN ERARD WAS BORN IN 1752 IN STRASBURG. IN 1768 HE MOVED TO PARIS, WHERE HE SOON BECAME ONE OF THE MAJOR INSTRUMENT MAKERS OF HIS TIME, PROTECTED BY LOUIS XVI WHO GRANTED HIM A SPECIAL LICENSE. IN 1777 ERARD MADE HIS FIRST SQUARE PIANO. WHEN THE REVOLUTION OF 1789 HAD DESTROYED HIS BUSINESS IN PARIS HE LEFT FOR LONDON WHERE HE OPENED A FACTORY AT GREAT MARLBOROUGH STREET. ALTHOUGH BETTER KNOWN FOR HIS PIANOS, THE HARP SEEMS TO HAVE BEEN ERARD'S FAVOURITE INSTRUMENT, FOR WHICH HE REGISTERED A NUMBER OF PATENTS. IN JUNE 1810, AFTER WORKING ON IT FOR EIGHT YEARS, ERARD PATENTED THE DOUBLE-ACTION HARP WITH SEVEN PEDALS. THE CONCERT HARP OF TODAY BASICALLY MAINTAINS HIS DESIGN. HE ALSO HAD AN EIGHTH PEDAL FOR OPENING THE BACK OF THE SOUND BOX, TO WORK AS A SWELL. THIS WOULD SEEM TO BE THE HARP AS OFFERED HERE. ERARD'S COMPANY REMAINED ACTIVE INTO THE 20TH CENTURY.

    Special Notice

    Christie’s charges a premium to the buyer on the Hammer Price of each lot sold at the following rates: 29.75% of the Hammer Price of each lot up to and including €20,000, plus 23.8% of the Hammer Price between €20,001 and €800.000, plus 14.28% of any amount in excess of €800.000. Buyer’s premium is calculated on the basis of each lot individually.