Blockflöte German
Block Flute English
Blockpfeife German
Blockpipe (unknown)
Blockflöt German
Blokfluit Dutch
Blokfløjte Danish
Bockflöte English
Plochflöt German?
Plockflöt[e] German
Plockpfeife German?
Recorder English
Weite Pfeife German
Weitpfeife German
Tibia Vulgaris Latin

A large scale flute stop of 16', 8', 4', 2' or 1' pitch, named after the instrument of the same name (recorder) and sometimes imitative of it. It is usually open metal, but sometimes of wood, and may be stopped, conical, or (according to Grove & Williams) harmonic. While Audsley and Grove claim that it is usually found at 4' pitch, those at 4' account for less than half the examples in Osiris (see below). Grove dates it from as early as 1620. Only Sumner explicitly equates this stop with Recorder. Wedgwood lists Plockflöte and Bockflöte as corruptions, but Audsley gives it a description consistent with Bokflöte. The name Tibia Vulgaris means “common flute”; the name Weitpfeife derives from the German word weit meaning “wide”, probably referring to the scale. The names Blokfluit and Blokflojte do not appear in the literature, but we assume them to be synonyms.

See Flûte à Bec, Flûte à Neuf Trous, Weitflöte.




Osiris contains about 300 examples of Blockflöte, of which half are at 2' pitch, seven are at 1' pitch, two at 8', and the rest at 4', and the earliest of which are listed below. It contains three dozen examples of Blockflute at 2' pitch, ten examples at 2' pitch, and three of Weitpfeife at 2' pitch. For each of Blokfluit and Blokflojte there are three examples at 2' and one at 4', all of which date from the late 20th century. No examples are known of Blockpfeife, Blockpipe, Bockflöte, Plochflöt, Plockflöte, or Plockpfeife. Contributions welcome.

Blockflöte 4', Oberwerk; Marienkirche, Stralsund, Germany; Stellwagen 1659. This is the earliest example whose date we know with any certainty. It is the only wooden stop in the organ.

Blockflöte 4', Rückpositiv; Katherinenkirche, Hamburg, Germany; Stellwagen 1543. This stop may date from 1606, 1636, or 1670.

Blockflöte 2', Brustwerk; Abbey Church, Schlaegl, Austria; Putz 1634. This stop may not be original.

Blockflute 2', Swell; First Baptist Church, Bennington, Vermont, USA; Hook & Hastings 1872. May have been added by Wicks in 1957.

Tibia Vulgaris 8'; Collegiata di Figline, Italy; Mascioni 1936. A Voce Umana. This is the only known example of this name.

Weitpfeife 2' (tin), Hauptwerk; Wenzelskirche, Naumberg, Germany; Hildebrandt 1743-46.

Weitpfeife 2', Pedal; Cathedral, Merseburg, Germany; Kuehn 1961-63.

Weitpfeife 2', Pedal; St. Maximin, Koblenz-Horchheim, Germany; Mayer 1987.


Adlung[1]: §122 Blockflöt, §210 Weite Pfeife. Audsley[1]: Blockflote; Tibia Vulgaris. Audsley[2]: I.XIII Blockflöte. Grove[1]: Blockflöte. Hopkins & Rimbault[1]: § 613. Irwin[1]: Blockflöte. Locher[1]: Flute. Maclean[1]: Blockflöte. Sumner[1]: Recorder. Wedgwood[1]: Blockflöte; Plockflöte; Tibia Vulgaris; Weitpfeife. Williams[1]: Glossary: Blockflöte.
Copyright © 2001 Edward L. Stauff, all rights reserved.
Blockflote.html - Last updated 29 September 2007.
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