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Back of a chanter for a full size set of Highland bagpipes known as MacCorquodale's Pipes

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late 18th century

Back of a chanter for a full size set of Highland bagpipes known as MacCorquodale's Pipes
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Back of a chanter for a full size set of Highland bagpipes showing typically variegated sap and heart wood and the deep impressions of they player's thumbs. Made of cocus wood mounted with an ivory sole and a horn bulb. It bears no maker's mark. Probably late 18th century.

Important musicological inferences can be drawn from the patterns of wear, such as the acceptability or otherwise of tonal variation over the range and difficulties in tuning chanters for ensemble playing. This class of evidence is rare for the 18th century since chanters which were broken were discarded and so few good examples survive. This example has cracked slightly and been repaired with hemp bindings.

This set of pipes was given to the last owner for safekeeping in 1958 by a Miss MacCorquodale, then aged, whose MacCorquodale ancestor, to whom it was said the pipes had first belonged, had played for recruiting and at the formation of the 74th Regiment or Argyllshire Highlanders raised in Argyllshire in 1778 by Colonel John Campbell of Barbreck. This Regiment was embarked for America in May 1778 and served there until 1783 when it returned home to be disbanded at Stirling in the autumn of the same year.

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