Karl Moritz Missenharter American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 680

This lavishly embellished instrument evinces the cornet’s position as the most popular brass instrument of virtuoso soloists and band leaders of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Its gold plated surface is a tour de force of decorative techniques including engraving, embossing and surface treatments such as mirror burnishing and frosting. The presence of all of the instrument’s original shanks, mouthpieces, matching engraved mute, cleaning rod, grease pot and distinctive leather case is exceptional. Missenharter began his instrument making career in Ulm, Germany before setting up shop in New York. This German heritage is evident in stylistic aspects of this cornet, particularly the jewel-eyed serpent twined round the crook receiver.

Cornet, Karl Moritz Missenharter, Brass, gold plate, American

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