Fortepiano Joseph Dohnal, E 2585

The instrument is owned by the National Museum – Czech Museum of Music, Prague. This is a rare instrument of the Viennese builder Joseph Dohnal (I), born on November 20, 1759 in Nenakonice near Dub nad Moravou, died on December 30, 1829 in Vienna. In 1818, he handed over the business to his son of the same name.

Dating: 1808 – 1818, Vienna.

Tone range: F1- f4 – six octaves.

Dimensions: instrument without lid and legs – 219 x 116 x 29.5 cm.

Previous known restoration interventions: not documented but evident.

Period of restoration works: 04/2004 – 12/2006.

The concept of the restoration: The instrument was comprehensively damaged by a flood in 2002 (there was 1.5m of water in the area where the instrument was placed). The investor wanted to bring the instrument into playable condition. Therefore, after initial research and consultation, restoration of the instrument started.

The instrument was sensitively restored and despite the extent of its damage it was put into playable condition (it can also be used for concert playing) while preserving its integrity and authenticity – a maximum of the original components were preserved, patina, traces of use and the original surface were left on the surfaces not affected by water treatment, the original surface treatment was removed and replaced with a new one according to the analysis, on areas that were exposed to polluted water from floods for a long time.


For further information please see CZ version.

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