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ON THE ESSENTIAL MECHANISM OF THE PRINCIPAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, CONSIDERED IN REFERENCE TO QUALITY.
1. Sounds of tuning-forks.
48. When a vibrating tuning-fork is held to the ear, we at once perceive, beside the proper note of the fork, a shrill, ringing and usually rather discordant, sound. If however the fork is mounted on its resonance-box, as in Fig. 24, p. 81, the fun damental tone is so much strengthened that the extraneous sound is by comparison evanescent. Provided the fork be but moderately excited, e.g. by gentle stroking with a resined bow, the sound heard is practically1 a simple tone. It is characterised by extreme mildness, without a trace of anything which could be called harsh or piercing. As compared with
1 Except with very gentle bowing, however, or unless the fork's note has been allowed to grow faint, examination with resonators shows traces of overtones belonging to the ordinary series given in § 43.