Chartres 12th century psaltery

Chartres 12th century psaltery


On 2017, April 20th I was asked by "Instrumentarium de Chartres" to go to Chartres to study one of the Psalteries sculpted in the so called Portail Royal (1144).


In front of the Cathedral I found a van equipped with an elevator, in order to reach the sculpture to study it easily.

There I discovered that the instrument has 10 courses of strings instead of the  9 previously  declared.

I could measure and observe all the details of this object, then I was asked by "Instrumentarium de Chartres" to build a copy of the Psaltery to be held in the Cathedral permanent exhibition of medieval instruments and to be played occasionally by professional musicians.

My instrument is carved in Poplar and Beech. The two halves glued together, Poplar at the top, beech at the bottom.

The  tuning keys in Iron are placed in the right side of the back. Two straight bridges in Beech are glued over the top.


The Psaltery is equipped with Silver strings tuned  from to e'.  The top has been left free from varnish.

The instrument is now kept in the exhibition of instruments of Instrumentarium de Chartres, "sous le parvis de la Cathédrale".


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