Phoneuma (unknown)

A rare flute stop of 8' or 16' pitch, invented in 1896 by Hope-Jones, and made by J. W. Whiteley. Tonally, it is similar to a soft Quintaton, but, according to Wedgwood, more stringy. Bonavia-Hunt reports that the fundamental and 3rd harmonic are of equal strength; Irwin claims that the 3rd harmonic is slightly strengthened. It is made of small-scale metal pipes, either stoppered (according to Bonavia-Hunt) or capped (according to Irwin). Bonavia-Hunt describes it as a stoppered Viol, with a roller-bridge set further away from the mouth than is usual for a viol, and says that it is voiced without the stopper. Wedgwood reports that the lower octaves are bearded, and that in some examples the nicking extends only halfway across the languid. Its mouth is as narrow as 2/11 (Bonavia-Hunt) or 1/6 (Wedgwood). Wedgwood reports that it was occasionally used as a celeste, named Celestina by Hope-Jones in some cases, and that it was originally designed as a celeste for use with a Gedeckt. A number of 4' examples also reportedly have been made.

Wedgwood gives its etymology as being from the Greek fonê (�sound or voice�) and neuma (�sign�), or possibly pneuma (�breath or spirit�).

Examples

The only information we have regarding examples of this stop is provided by Wedgwood, who says:

St. Mark, Brighton; St. Michael, Chester Square, W. (Hope-Jones); Burton Parish Church (Norman & Beard and Hope-Jones). In 16 ft. pitch, Oakleigh Park Congregational Church (Ingram, Hope-Jones & Co.); Orchestrell Co, Regent Street, W. (Austin Organ Co., of U.S.A.). In U.S.A. - First Presbyterian Church, Montclair, N.J. (Austin Organ Co., Hope-Jones); St. John's School, Manlius, N.Y. (Hope-Jones and Harrison).

It is not known whether any examples are still extant. Contributions welcome.

Bibliography

Bonavia-Hunt[1]: Zartflöte. Irwin[1]: Phoneuma. Maclean[1]: Phoneuma. Sumner[1]: Phoneuma. Wedgwood[1]: Celestina; Phoneuma; Zartflöte.
 
Original website compiled by Edward L. Stauff. For educational use only.
Phoneuma.html - Last updated 11 November 2001.
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