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Representing musical tradition

This free exhibition focuses on particular instrument traditions of Western classical music and features some of the finest, rarest and most ornate examples of their types.

They are divided into six groups: according to function under the titles Consort, Continuo and Salon, and according to constructional or acoustical features under the titles Resonances, Virtuoso and Encore. 

The oldest instrument on display, the Jerome of Bologna harpsichord from 1521, is seen together with its red and gold tooled leather outer case. Many of the stringed instruments, including lutes and viols, have intricate inlay work in ivory, ebony and mother of pearl. Others, like the exquisitely carved octagonal recorder by Anciuti, are made entirely of ivory. 

About The Art of Harmony

Follow the links below to read more about the Art of Harmony exhibition:

Music at the Horniman

The Horniman Museum's collection of musical instruments is one of the most comprehensive in the UK. The Museum has more than 7,000 objects made to produce sound, representing music making around the world. 
The oldest instrument is a pair of bone clappers in the form of human hands made in Egypt around 1,500 BC. Electric guitars and synthesizers dating from the 1990s are among the most recent acquisitions.