John Preston (1586-1628)
Musical instruments, devices and recordings
1760 - 1770
wood, mother-of-pearl, tortoiseshell & metalOrder this image
Calke Abbey, Derbyshire
English Guitar, unsigned, second half of 18th century. 'Semi-festoon' in outline, the curving sides of the instrument are rounded to inward points below the rose. The back is a single piece of sycamore, the belly is of pine. Both have lines of purfling simulated in ink and are edged with a stringer of alternately dark and light woods laid obliquely. The gilt metal rose (now discoloured) is in a pattern of ribbons and husks with a lady, seated among trees, plucking an instrument, at its centre. The neck and ribs of the instrument are of sycamore. (The neck is broken at the heel). The fingerboard had twelve frets, five of them now lost. It is slightly curved, faced with red tortoiseshell (some parts now missing) and terminates in a ribbon of gilt. There are three holes for the attachment of a capotasto. The instrument has watchkey tuning, of which the brass frame of the mechanism is stamped, next to the ends of the worm gears, with the pitch of each course: C, E, G, C, E, G. The finial of the head is missing and the bridge is lost.
Makers and roles
John Preston (1586-1628), manufacturer