Collection of Musical Instruments
Department of Musicology, University of Göttingen

Kurze Geismarstr. 1
37073 Göttingen

Opening hours:
Closed since October 1st, 2019.
Visits are only possible on request as guided tours.

Dr. Klaus-Peter Brenner

Tel.: +49 (0551) 395075
Fax.: +49 (0551) 399353
E-Mail: K.P.Brenner

Set up in 1964, the teaching and research collection at Göttingen University’s Department of Musicology is one of the largest of its kind in Germany. Its holdings, broadly based in typological, historical and culture-geographical respects, encompass musical instruments from throughout the world, but the instruments originate predominantly from Europe, Asia and Africa (including Ancient Egypt). It was Heinrich Husmann (1908 – 1983) who established the collection by initiating the purchase of the private collection of Hermann Johannes Moeck (1896 – 1982) from Celle. Previously, other important collections including that of Hans Hickmann (1908 – 1968) from Cairo/Hamburg had already been incorporated into Moeck’s. Since then, the non-European holdings, in particular, have grown very substantially as a result of targeted purchases and loans, and the collection has been augmented particularly by field research collections assembled by Felix Hoerburger (1916 – 1997), Kurt Reinhard (1914 – 1979) and Ursula Reinhard (1915 – 2006), Rudolf Brandl (b.1943), and Klaus-Peter Brenner (b.1958). The European holdings were also expanded, notably through the collections of Martin Staehelin (b.1937) and Hermann Alexander Moeck (1922 – 2010), for example.

Among the exhibits are the 14th century recorder unearthed in Göttingen (on loan from the Göttingen Municipal Department of Archaeology), one of only seven extant ‘Coptic lutes’ (c. 3rd to 8th century AD), and an Ancient Egyptian arched harp (between 2,700 and 2,200 BC) presumed to be the oldest surviving specimen of its kind. The complete inventory catalogue is available online. The collection’s holdings and research profile reflect the fruitful collaboration between the three branch disciplines of Historical Musicology, Systematic Musicology and Ethnomusicology – manifested in Göttingen today as Historical, Social and Cultural Musicology.

Klaus-Peter Brenner

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