CHAPTER 4: Dulcimers in the British Isles since 1800 > 'British' dulcimers 1800-1945

An unsolved riddle

One unsolved riddle comes from the notes of Dr. Tobias Norlind, and consists of an illustration with the heading in English, "Dulcimers"; but next to it are prices in German.

Dr. Norlind left no note as to where he had found the advert, neither can the staff of the Stockholm music museum, of which he was director, be of any help.

It seems clear that a German maker or supplier of musical instruments was addressing a market interested in the English instruments - no question here of selling a Hackbrett, neither in name nor in characteristics.

Several authors specifically recommended the beginner to buy an English instrument, which can only mean that there were alternatives, of course: this is confirmed by John Rea's and Leslie Evans' references to German dulcimers: 1, 2, 3

But is this a German instrument-maker undercutting the English production for the home market, or a German music-seller importing English dulcimers to sell in parts of Germany where the Hackbrett was unknown.