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18th century Chamber Organ

Second half ot the 18th century



Often associated with clock, this chamber organ in the shape of a pavilion to place on a fireplace or a chest of drawers, delights the ears of courtiers during Louis XVI's reign. The architectural design of the instrument that we present here is particularly rich, by contrasting the splendor of gilded bronzes to the tortoise red shell on a green silk background and the painted ivory cartridges. The terrace, framed by a balustrade punctuated by medicis fire pots, is paved with coloured ivory diamonds. Three doors on the three sides open on the mechanism and pointed cylinder. Carving evokes the great workshops of Caffiéri, Thomire or Feuchère.

The mechanical barrel organ plays on demand eight melodies, on seventeen keys. The driving force comes from the traction of two powerful spiral springs on the chains of two fusées. The toothed crowns of these in turn mesh in a common pinion, according to the classical configuration called in parallel.

According to the customs of the Ancien Régime and the uses of the merchants-merciers, cabinet making and clock making remain external supplies. 

Although uncertain, the attribution to Jacques-Honoré Davrainville (1753-1826) is usual, if we consider the characteristics of the instrument: brass flat keys and the fineness of execution of the music notation.


Conditions: Mercury gilding of bronzes has been thoroughly cleaned. Some minor red flakes are absent. The stopped pipes harmony is absolutly original. Bellows are new skin covered. The drive mechanism is currently being cleaned and refurbished. The very fine notation is pinned on a monoxyl cylinder, moving by translation with each new melodie. Original winding key.

Dimensions :  355 mm x 420 mm x 235 mm


orgue cheminee vg


orgue cheminee mécanisme

 mécanisme avant nettoyage et restauration


orgue cheminee cylindre


orgue cheminee detail 1


orgue cheminee detail 2


orgue cheminee detail 3








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