Oboe

This beautifully carved ivory oboe was made by Giovanni Maria Anciuti of Milan, one of the greatest wind-instrument makers of his day. It was most likely made between 1717 and 1740, the period from which Anciuti's dated instruments survive. Earlier oboes like this example have simple holes bored into them, and only the lower ones are covered with keys, so as to facilitate the natural stretch of the hand. Before the museum acquired this oboe, it formed part of a decorative trophy of old wind instruments that hung on a wall of the Paris apartment of Gioacchino Rossini (1782-1868), the great Italian composer of light opera.