Collection 46 - Fisher flute collection

Identity area

Reference code



Fisher flute collection


  • [ca. 1760 - ca. 1905] (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

22 flutes

Context area

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Biographical history

Archival history

These flutes were on display in the Music Library for many years. Item-level descriptions were transcribed from the display cards that accompanied each flute.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

A gift in 1973 to the University of Toronto Library by Sidney Fisher included 21 historical flutes, and a complementary collection of eighteenth-century flute solo and chamber music. These albums contained flute duets and trios by Bononcini and Corelli, as well as by English composers such as James Paisible and William Croft. A British navy band flute (Item 22) was donated by Dr. S. Bulley and added to the collection.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Collection consists of late-eighteenth, nineteenth, and early-twentieth century flutes, predominantly made by various builders and companies in London, England, as well as two from Paris, one from France, and one from Bayreuth, Germany. The collection covers the mechanization and modernization of the flute, including the addition of holes and keys, and the move from wood to metal for the body of the flute.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


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Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Flutes may be viewed in the Olnick Rare Book Room at the University of Toronto Music Library. Please use gloves when handling the instruments to protect the metals and woods.

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Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

The collection of eighteenth-century solo and chamber music was added to the Music Library's Rare Book room. Also see the Sidney T. and Charles Boddy Fisher Papers (CA OTUTF MS COLL 00145 2B Annex) and the Sidney Fisher Collection in the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto.

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Dates of creation revision deletion

Collection described August 23, 2019.




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