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When Bernard Trasuntinis made this harpsichord in 16th-century Venice, the city was abuzz with musical instrument makers. Like other harpsichords of its time this instrument could be removed from its case and played on a table. It is the oldest, playable instrument in our collection, though it now stands in a modern outer case.This instrument has a modern outer case which highlights the cypress inner instrument. Like many Italian instruments this has a boxwood keyboard, and the accidentals are of ebony. The surname Trasuntino is associated with several 16th-century harpsichord and clavichord makers although this is the only instrument to bear the name Bernardius. The date of 1574 makes this the oldest playing instrument in the collection. (Rodger Mirrey Collection).