The Dulcian or Curtal is the renaissance predecessor of
the bassoon, developed in the first half of the 16th century. The
Dulcian has the conical expanding bore from the Shawm, and the folded
two parallel bores from the Sordune and Kortholt.
Like many other instruments in the renaissance, Dulcians
were made in a family, soprano until contrabass. The smaller
instruments up to the bass, are in general made from one piece of wood.
Larger instruments are in many cased made from two or three pieces of
In the 17th century, the small Dulcians are getting less
and less important. At the same time the baroque Bassoon is developed,
while the bass Dulcian is still in use.
See B. Kenyon de Pascual. in Galpin Society Journal 1984.
Dulcian sound samples:
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Last updated on 2 August 2017