|François-Étienne Blanchet (1695-1761) was the most famous member of a family of instrument makers which influenced French harpsichord building decisively during the 18th century. His father, Nicolas Blanchet (born in 1660), a native of Reims, set up his workshop in Paris and started making harpsichords and spinets. Besides making new instruments in his workshop in the rue de la Verrerie, François-Étienne also extended the compasses of early Flemish harpsichords of the Ruckers family (mettre à grand ravalement) to 5 octaves in accordance with the contemporary trend.
François-Étienne Blanchet was also the master of Pascal Taskin, the most eminent French maker of harpsichords during the second half of the 18th century. After the death of François-Étienne's son in 1766 (who bore the same name as his father), Pascal Taskin married his widow and led the tradition of harpsichord making to a last climax.
Among the surviving instruments made by Blanchet, there is only one single manual harpsichord left, which was rediscovered a few years ago in France. This instrument, built in 1737 by François-Étienne Blanchet, is the original for our copy.
single manual harpsichord,
keyboard compass: G1-e3 (= 4 5/6 octaves)
disposition: 81', 82', lute to 82'
length 220 cm (7'3")
width 88 cm (2'11")
net weight 63 kg (139 lbs)
stand style: Louis XIV
- transposing device (a1 = 440/415 Hz)
- compass extended to f3
- gold leaf bands
- stands in different styles
- benches and covers matching the instrument
- painted soundboard
clavecin à un clavier
étendue de clavier: Sol1-mi3 (= 4 5/6 octaves)
disposition: 81', 82', luth pour 82'
longueur 220 cm, largeur 88 cm, net 63 kg
estensione della tastíera: 4 5/6 ottave (Sol1-mi3)
disposizione: 81', 82', liuto a 82'
lunghezza 220 cm, larghezza 88 cm, netto 63 kg
extensión del teclado: 4 5/6 octavas (Sol1 -mi3)
disposición: 81', 82', laúd a 82'
largo 220 cm, ancho 88 cm, neto 63 kg