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Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V13, Page 15 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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HENRI HARPIGNIES (1819– ), French landscape painter, born at Valenciennes in 1819, was intended by his parents for a business career, but his determination to become an artist was so strong that it conquered all obstacles, and he was allowed at the age of twenty-seven to enter Achard's atelier in Paris. From this painter he acquired a groundwork of sound constructive draughtsmanship, which is so marked a feature of his landscape painting. After two years under this exacting teacher he went to Italy, whence he returned in I85o. During the next few years he devoted himself to the painting of children in landscape setting, and fell in with Corot and the other Barbizon masters, whose principles and methods are to a certain extent reflected in his own personal art. To Corot he was united by a bond of warm friendship, and the two artists went together to Italy in 186o. On his return, he scored his first great success at the Salon, in 1861, with his " Lisiere de bois sur les bords de 1'Allier." After that year he was a regular exhibitor at the old Salon; in 1886 he received his first medal for " Le Soir dans la campagne de Rome," which was acquired for the Luxembourg Gallery. Many of his best works were painted at Herisson in the Bourbonnais, as well as in the Nivernais and the Auvergne. Among his chief pictures are " Soir sur les bords de la Loire " (1861), " Les Corbeaux " (1865), " Le Soir " (1866), " Le Saut-du-Loup " (1873), " La Loire " (1882), and " Vue de Saint-Prive " (1883). He also did some decorative work for the Paris Opera—the " Vallee d'Egerie " panel, which he Showed at the Salon of 187o. HARP-LUTE, or DITAL HARP, one of the many attempts to revive the popularity of the guitar and to increase its compass, invented in 1798 by Edward Light. The harp-lute owes the first part of its name to the characteristic mechanism for shortening the effective length of the strings; its second name—dital harp—emphasizes the nature of the stops, which are worked by the thumb in contradistinction to the pedals of the harp workedby the feet. It consists of a pear-shaped body, to which is added a curved neck supported on a front pillar or arm springing from the body, and therefore reminiscent of the harp. There are 12 catgut strings. The curved fingerboard, almost parallel with the neck, is provided with frets, and has in addition a thumb-key for each string, by means of which the accordance of the string is mechanically raised a semitone at will. The dital or key, on being depressed, acts upon a stop-ring or eye, which draws the string down against the fret, and thus shortens its effective length. The fingers then stop the strings as usual over the remaining frets. A further improvement was patented in 1816 as the British harp-lute. Other attempts possessing less practical merit than the dital harp were the lyra-guitarre, which appeared in Germany at the beginning of the 19th century; the accord-guitarre, towards the middle of the same century; and the keyed guitar. (K. S.)
End of Article: HENRI HARPIGNIES (1819– )
HARPIES (Gr. "Aplrvcar, older form 'Apiarucar, " sw...

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