Pianoforte - (Musical Instruments, Piano)

Pianoforte - (Musical Instruments, Piano) A keyboard instrument in which the strings are struck, not plucked. The piano was invented by Bartolomeo Cristofori of Florence in the early years of the eighteenth century. The first English piano was made about 1760: it was small and rectangular and, as regards shape, looked to the virginal and clavichord. This type of piano, four to five feet long, was called the `square' piano and was made in considerable numbers for the remainder of the eighteenth century. The `upright' piano came into favor about 1800, but meantime the `grand', based on the harpsichord shape, had evolved in the 1780's.

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