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Landsknecht Drum, 16th C Style, Ernst Schmidt, Munich, Late 19th C
Entirely hand made in the fashion of the exceedingly rare 16th C originals; constructed of laminated strips of wood, covered in gesso, then hand painted with fleur de lis, coats of arms, foliage and monster faces. Both drum heads of genuine animal skin are intact, with tightening ropes adjusted by leather sleeves. Very good condition with the paint showing crackling and some losses, typical of age and use. Overall height is 28", with a diameter of 12 3/4". In the late 1870's, Ernst Schmidt, a dealer of original and reproduction arms and armor, purchased an atelier in Munich which specialized in accurate quality reproductions to satisfy the demand of clients during the Gothic Revival. His copies were produced by master craftsmen using originals from museums and private collections as their guide. Then, as now, original examples were very difficult to find and often prohibitively expensive. Many of his reproductions are featured in museums today and it is not at all uncommon to find examples offered and represented as genuine due to their accuracy and the fact that they are now over 100 years old. While not a 16th C original, the drum offered here is likely the only opportunity a collector will ever have to find an accurately represented Landsknecht drum, as originals are virtually non-existent.
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