Flach Flute German/English
Flachflöt[e] German
Flachfloit (unknown)
Flachflojte (unknown)
Flachpfeife German

These names have been used for stops with a variety of wood and metal pipe forms: straight, conical, or cylindrical surmounted by a conical section (see Spillflöte). The scale varied, as did the tone. Adlung describes its tone as quite plain and unpretentious”, and its construction as “a bit conical”, and states that it is sometimes synonymous with Spitzflöte. Seidel (by way of Audsley) and Wedgwood describe its tone as thin, and Locher calls it “sharply intonated”; Williams describes the metal varieties as having strong and round tone, and the wooden varieties gentle tone. Audsley conjectures that, since the name can be translated as “flat flute”, the original Flachflöte pipe must have been of wood, with the mouth on the wide side, rather than on the narrow side as is more common. However, he also states that this would have given it a “full and distinctive intonation”. Grove and Williams state that the name is more likely a corruption of “flageolet flute”. This stop can be found at 8', 4', 2', or 1' pitch, and dates from the early 17th century. Only the names Flachflöte and Flachpfeife appear in the literature; we assume the other names to be synonyms.




Osiris contains about 80 examples of Flachflöte, seven dozen examples, most at 2' pitch, with a few at 1', 4', and 8', four examples of Flachflute, all at 2' pitch, two examples of Flachfloit, and one of Flachflojte. No examples of Flachpfeife are known. Contributions welcome.

Flach-flöte 2', Werck; Nicolaikirche, Hamburg, Germany; Schnitger 1682-86.

Flachfloit 2', Oberpositiv; Ludgerikirche, Norden, Germany; Schnitger 1686.

Flachfloit 2', Werck; Kreuzkirche, Pilsum, Germany; Grotian 1694. This example was reconstructed by Ahrend in 1991.

Flachflojte 2', Swell; First United Methodist Church, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA; Marcussen 1987.

Sound Clips

See the Sound Files appendix for general information.

Flachflöte 2', Manual I University of Illinois, USA Buzard, 1986 arpeggio


Adlung[1]: §144 Flachflöte. Audsley[1]: Flachflöte. Audsley[2]: I.XIII Flachflöte. Grove[1]: Flachflöte. Irwin[1]: Flachflöte. Locher[1]: Flachflöte. Maclean[1]: Flachflöte. Sumner[1]: Flachflöte. Wedgwood[1]: Flachflöte. Williams[1]: Glossary: Flachflöte.
Copyright © 2001 Edward L. Stauff, all rights reserved.
Flachflote.html - Last updated 17 October 2004.
Full Index