Viola da Gamba Italian
Viola di Gamba Italian
Viol di Gamba English/Italian
Viole de Gambe French
Kniegeige German
String Gamba English?
Violadigamba (unknown)
Violdigamba (unknown)
Violdigambe (unknown)

This entry is still under construction. The next time you visit, check the Revision History to see what's been added.

An imitative string stop of 16' or 8' pitch, voiced to resemble the stringed instrument of the same name. The illustration is Audsley's. See also Gamba, Bell Gamba.


Contra Viola da Gamba


Osiris contains 140 examples of Viole de Gambe, 100 examples of Viola da Gamba, 70 examples of Viola di Gamba, 18 examples of Viol di Gamba, and one example of String Gamba. No examples of Kniegeige are known. Contributions welcome.

String Gamba 8', Swell; Worcester Cathedral, Worcester, England; Hope-Jones 1896.

Viola da Gamba 4', Rückpositiv; Nicolaikirche, Leipzig, Germany; Thayssner 1693. This is the earliest known example of this name.

Viola da Gamba 8', Hauptwerk; Neue-kirche “St. Bonifatius”, Arnstadt, Germany; Wender 1703.

Viole de Gambe 8', Grand Orgue; St. Denis, Paris, France; Cavaillé-Coll 1841. This is the earliest known example of this name.

Viole de Gambe 8', Positif; La Madelein, Paris, France; Cavaillé-Coll 1846.

Viola di Gamba 8', Oberwerk; St. Blasius, Muhlhausen Germany; Wender 1709. This is the earliest example of this name.

Viola di Gamba 8', Oberwerk; Liebfrauenkirche, Halle, Germany; Cuncius 1716.

Viol di Gamba 8', Hauptwerk; Klosterkirche St. Abdon and Sennen, Salzgitter-Ringelheim, Niedersachsen, Germany; Schweimb 1696. This is the earliest known example of this name.

Violdigamba 8', Hauptwerk; Schlosskirche, Altenburg, Germany; Trost 1739.

Sound Clips

See the Sound Files appendix for general information.

Viola di Gamba 8', Swell St. Anne's Church, Moseley, Birmingham, England Brindley & Foster, 1907 arpeggio St. Anne
Viole de Gambe 8', Récit Expressive St. Bernhard, Mainz, Germany Cavaillé-Coll, 1872-1892 arpeggio St. Anne
Viole de Gambe 8', Swell Culver Academy, Indiana, USA Cavaillé-Coll, 1872-1892 arpeggio St. Anne


Adlung[1]: §149 Fugara, §153 Gemshorn, §188 Schweizerpfeife, §204 Viola, §206 Violadigamba. Audsley[1]: Viola da Gamba. Audsley[2]: I.XIII Gamba, Viola da Gamba; II.XXXVI Viola da Gamba. Bonavia-Hunt[1]: String Gamba; Viola. Grove[1]: Viola da Gamba. Hopkins & Rimbault[1]: § 389, 586-587. Irwin[1]: Viola da Gamba. Locher[1]: Gamba. Maclean[1]: String Gamba; Viola; Viola da Gamba. Sumner[1]: Viola da Gamba. Wedgwood[1]: Bell Gamba; Gamba; Viola da Gamba. Williams[1]: Glossary: Viola da Gamba.
Copyright © 1999 Edward L. Stauff, all rights reserved.
ViolaDaGamba.html - Last updated 21 August 2009.
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