Grove describes these names as “denoting the Principal stop in those early sources that used the word ‘Prinzipal’ to mean ‘plenum’ or main chorus from c1450, e.g. ‘le prestant ou doeuf’ at Namur, 1598.” Grove does not make it clear whether these terms referred to a unison or octave rank. Adlung lists it as a synonym for Principal.
The etymologies of these names are not known with any certainty. The Dutch word “doef” can be translated "muffled", which may refer to the relatively soft sound of the single stop, as compared with the “blockwerk” of early organs.
See also Coppendoff.
No examples of Doff, Doif or Doef are known. Contributions welcome. All known examples of Doof are given below.
Doof 4'; St-Denijs, Veurne, Belgium; De Buus 1521.
Doof 8', Werk; Doof 4', Rugpositief; O.L. Vrouwkerk, Kortrijk, Belgium; Van Den Eekhoute 1529.
Doof 8', manual; St. Quintens, Leuven, Belgium; Verrijt 1522.
Doof 8', Werk; Doof 4', Rugpositief; Abbey, Averbode, Belgium; Boets Van Heyst 1517.
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Doef.html - Last updated 15 August 2003.