Clementi Piano

Object name: Clementi piano

Object number: CHWJA:JAH6

Category: Object

Description: Mahogany cased square piano, made by Clementi and Co. The ebony strung case encloses a satinwood veneered interior with tendril pierced panels on ring turned tapered legs and brass castors.

Made: 1813

Context: Jane Austen enjoyed music and played the piano all her life. As a young girl, her love of music was encouraged by her father, who bought her a pianoforte and arranged for her to receive instruction from the assistant organist at Winchester Cathedral. When the family left Steventon in 1801 the piano was sold, and whilst living in Bath and Southampton Jane made do with a rented instrument. When the moved to Chawton in 1809 she wrote to Cassandra:

‘Yes, yes, we will have a Pianoforte, as good a one as can be got for 30 Guineas — & I will practise country dances, that we may have some amusement for our nephews & neices, when we have the pleasure of their company.’

Jane Austen, 28 December 1808

This Clementi square piano is of a slightly later date than the one Jane then purchased, but is likely to be of a similar style and quality.

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