> Yep, I have one of the virginal copies and its action is almost impossible,
> for me at least, to play. I've heard others play it well, so the problem
> must be with my technique.
I think you would have the same trouble with any Italian virginal at the bass end, unless you play right at the end of the key. The Obici, like many others, has the balance pin forward of the nameboard at low C/E, with a very neat boxwood plug inlaid over it. You might have to look for it to notice.
Let me say I have seen how Lee works, and I am confident that his drawing accurately depicts what was there. I have a copy of that one, but it is in storage and I haven't looked at it for more than 30 years.
I did measure the other "Perticis" that he later made a drawing of. I compared his drawing with my own, and the only discrepancy was my interpretation of possible straightening of the treble end of the bridge, where it had come unglued. Lee's drawing shows it exactly as found, with a little straight section. Thus my f''' has slightly longer scale than his, but not significantly.
It was Lee's opinion, and I agree, that the two instruments did not come from the same hand. I have been told, but not seen myself, that two more instruments bear that name, and that none of the four are from the same hand.
The harpsichord had passed through Franciolini, but was too shallow to hold extra keyboards and escaped alteration, although the outer case was repainted with a new stand. It seems possible that F. pulled the name from a city directory as a builder at the right period, and signed the instrument accordingly.
I was amused to notice in Jay's picture that his virginal has a rose copied from that in the harpsichord, not the virginal.
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