homePianoforte-makers in England


 

TOLKIEN Henry
in London

1857

Patent of 1857 :  "May 13, 1857. - H. TOLKIEN and J. MIDDLETON «Hard wedge or wedges,» inserted in the bracings for strength." The History of the Pianoforte: With an Account of the Theory of Sound and ..., Edgar Brinsmead, 1889, p. 212

"PROVISIONAL SPECIFICATION left by the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton at the Office of the Commissioners of Patents, with their Petition, on the 13th May 1857.

We, HENRY TOLKIEN, of the City of London, and JOSEPH MIDDLETON, of Finsbury, both in the County of Middlesex, do hereby declare the nature of the said Invention for “IMPROVEMENTS IN PIANOFORTES," to be as follows
(that is to say) :-

Our Invention, which has reference to obtaining greater permancy and brilliancy of tone in pianofortes, by giving additional strength and rigidity to 10 the bracings than hitherto, consists in employing in place of the ordinary

method a truss convex bracing of wood, for which purpose we cause one or more openings to be made in each of the said bracings, and a hard wedge or wedges to be inserted therein in any convenient manner, so as to truss up the upper front portions thereof, and render the same more or less convex proportionately to the thickness and form of the wedges employed.

SPECIFICATION in pursuance of the conditions of the Letters Patent, filed by the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, in the Great Seal Patent Office on the 13th November 1857.

TO ALL TO WHOM THESE PRESENTS SHALL COME, we, IIENRY Tolkien, of the City of London, and Joseph MIDDLETON, of Finsbury, both 5 in the County of Middlesex, send greeting.

WHEREAS Her most Excellent Majesty Queen Victoria, by Her Letters Patent, bearing date the Thirteenth day of May, in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and fifty-seven, in the twentieth year of Her reign, did, for Herself, Her heirs and successors, give and grant unto us, the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, Her special licence that we, the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, our executors, administrators, and assigns, or such others as we, the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, our executors, administrators, and assigns, should at any time agree with, and no others, from time to time and at all times thereafter during the term therein expressed, should and lawfully might make, use, exercise, and vend, within the 'United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, the Channel Islands, and Isle of Man, an Invention for “IMPROVEMENTS IN PIANOFORTES,” upon the condition (amongst others) that we, the said Ilenry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, our executors or administrators, by an instrument in writing under our, or their, or one of their hands and seals, should particularly describe and ascertain the nature of the said Invention, and in what manner the same was to be performed, and cause the same to be filed in the Great Seal Patent Office within six calendar months next and immediately after the date of the said Letters Patent.

NOW KNOW YE, that we, the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, do hereby declare the nature of our said Invention, and in what manner same is to be performed, to be particularly described and ascertained in and by the following statement, and the Drawings therein referred to (that is to say) :

Our Invention, which has reference to obtaining greater permanency and brilliancy of tone in pianofortes, by giving additional strength and rigidity to the bracings than hitherto, consists in employing in place of the ordinary method a truss convex bracing of wood, for which purpose we cause one or more openings to be made in each of the said bracings, and a hard wedge or  wedges to be inserted therein in any convenient manner, so as to truss up the upper front portions thereof, and render the same more or less convex proportionately to the thickness and form of the wedges employed.

Image : English Patents of Inventions, Specifications, 1857, p. 7/25

But in order that our said Invention may be more fully understood and readily carried into effect, we now proceed to describe it by the aid of the accompanying Drawings, reference being had to the letters and figures thereon marked (that is to say) :

Fig. 1 represents a side elevation, partly in section, of a pianoforte with our improvements attached;
Fig. 2, a side view of the bracing, separately shown;
Fig. 3, a front view of the same;
Fig. 4, a side view of the bracing, showing a modification of the above;
Fig. 5, a corresponding view thereof, showing the several parts of which the same is composed ; Fig. 6, wedge for trussing 10 the bracing;
Fig. 7, a side view of a bracing on our improved principle, with metallic back and wedge omitted ;
Fig. 8, a front view of the same, and
Fig. 9, a side view thereof, composed wholly of wood. In each Figure the same letters of reference denote similar corresponding parts.

A, A, case or body of the instrument;
B, B, truss bracing, forming the wooden framework or skeleton, upon which the wires are held in a state of tension;
C, C, wedge for trussing up the bracing, and rendering the front portion thereof convex, for the purpose of securing greater rigidity and resistance to the strain upon the strings, and maintaining greater uniformity of tone than by the wooden bracings at present in use ;
D, D, rest plank ;
E, E, hitch pin block;
F, F, tightening bolts;
G, G, metallic heel plate;
H, I, sounding board ;
I, I, strings or wires;
J, J, tuning pins; K, K, rest plank bridge;
L, L, belly bridge; M, M, angular joint;
N, N, stay, or back portion of the bracing ;
0, 0, the same, formed of metal.

Bracings formed in accordance with our improvements may be constructed in one or more parts, with or without the employment of metallic substances, and the said parts united or held together by bolts, pins, screws, or otherwise ; bracings in like manner may also be formed with convex front surfaces, as above mentioned, by substituting in place of the wedge the requisite angular joint, as represented at L, L, Figs. 7, 8, and 9.

In conclusion to the foregoing description we would bere briefly note, that the construction of the bracings may be effected in various ways, such as being sawn partly through when in one piece, as at Figs. 1, 2, and 3, or united when in two parts through the medium of a metallic back, as at Figs. 7 and 8, but we prefer the mode of forming them of several parts, as represented at Figs. 4, 5, and 6, in which case we cause the back portions to be bent to the requisite angle, by placing the centres thereof over a saddle or fulcrum so as to depress the ends, or by any other suitable method, by which means the two front portions may be readily bolted or secured thereto, and the wedge inserted so as to maintain the whole in its flexed or angular position; and we would further note that our said improvements are applicable to all the various descriptions of pianofortes of the usual construction.

Having now fully described the nature of this our said Invention, and the manner in which the same is to performed and carried into effect, we would bave it clearly understood that we do not by any means confine our- 5 selves to the precise details herein-before set forth and described, as the same might be varied without departing from the general princple of these our said improvements ; but that which we do claim as new and of our said Invention is, the general construction and arrangement of truss convex bracings in the manner and for the purposes herein-before set forth and 10 described.

In witness whereof, we, the said Henry Tolkien and Joseph Middleton, have hereunto set our hands and seals, this Thirteenth day of November, in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and fifty-seven. HENRY TOLKIEN. (L.s.) - JOSEPH MIDDLETON. (L.s) - Witness, F. R. DARKIN CAMPBELL, Clerk to Messrs. Weatherdon & Co., 20 77, Chancery Lane." English Patents of Inventions, Specifications, 1857, p. 7-

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