Rare Derby figure, ‘Gentleman playing pipes’, c, 1765


Rare Derby figure of a Gentleman playing pipes, dressed in a stylish pink overcoat with feathers in his hat, standing before a flowery bocage & on a lawn pond base with rococo scroll moulding, the whole decorated in colourful enamels & gold.


circa 1765

19cm high

Condition: restorations include  feathers on hat, tip of pipe, fingers, mouthpiece

ref. Bradshaw ‘Derby Figures’p35 –  B12 ‘Gentleman playing a reed-pipe’ for a 1750-5 bare-headed original; p64 for an illustration of this figure, D2, c. 1756-59 – here shown wearing a hat, and titled ‘Gentleman Flautist’, playing a flute (held vertically).
This example seems to be a ‘next-step’, with a typical 1760’s base and patch-marks evident. Insead of the straight flute/pipe, he is playing ‘bagpipes’ – actually the Continental ‘Musette’, a favourite of the French Royalty but almost unknown by the 19th century. They are distinctly different to bagpipes, as they do not need to be constantly blown-up by the player – the mouthpiece is used to inflate them, then positioned to one side, as this figure demonstrates – once filled, pumping them under his left arm instigates a bellows mechanism that keeps them inflated.
The fingers play the tune on the main shaft, with has double-reeds; the other distinct feature are the two trailing drainage pipes.




Sold - let us find you another

SKU: 1029835 Categories: , ,