SOSTENUTO, 'sustained'; a direction which has of late come to be used with a considerable degree of ambiguity. It originally signified that the notes were to be held for their full value, and was thus equivalent to tenuto ; but in music of the modern ' romantic ' school it very often has the same meaning as meno motso, or something be- tween that and ritenuto i. e. the passage so marked is to be played at a uniform rate of decreased speed until the words a tempo occur. No precise rule can be given for its interpreta- tion, as its use varies with different masters, and even in different works by the same master. One of the most remarkable instances of its use is in the Introduction to Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, which is marked Poco sostenuto only, with no direction as to speed. The ' Meeresstille' in his op. 112 is Sostenuto, the Preludium before the Benedictus in the Mass in D is Sostenuto ma non troppo, and the Kyrie of the same work Assai sostenuto. So is the Introduction to the A minor Quartet, op. 132. Here we have all the varieties. [J.A.F.M.]
SOSTINENTE PIANOFORTE. The term implies a pianoforte capable of producing a sus- tained sound, such as that of the organ, har- monium, or violin. It must however be borne in mind that by giving the pianoforte this power of sustaining sound, the special character of the instrument is transformed, and in point of fact the 'sostinente' pianoforte is a pianoforte in name only. It is the rapid diminution of the fugitive tone that raises the ordinary pianoforte to that ideal terrain wherein it finds one of its chief excellences, the prerogative of freedom from cloying ; the emotion of the hearer entering actively into the appreciation of its unsubstantial tones, while it is rather taken captive by the more material tones of sostinente instruments. Under the head of PIANO- VIOLIN the Hurdy Gurdy is referred to as the germ of sostinente keyed- instruments; and allied to the harpsichord we next meet with it in the Gambenwerk of Hans Haydn of Nuremberg, dating about 1610. The Lyrichord, patented by Roger Plenius in London in 1741, demands notice as being a harpsichord strung with wire and catgut, made on the sosti- nente principle, and actuated by moving wheels instead of the usual quills, so that the bow of the violin and the organ were imitated. There is no specification to the patent, but a magazine article of 1755. in the possession of the writer, gives a drawing and complete description of the in- strument, which was otherwise remarkable for sustaining power by screws, springs, and balanced tension weights for tuning ; for silver covering to the bass strings, like the largest ' Bass- violins '; for the use of iron to counteract the greater pull of the octave-strings (in the drawing there are apparently four iron bars connecting the wrest- plank and soundboard, thus anticipating the later introduction of steel arches in grand pianofortes for similar service) ; and lastly for the Swell ob- tained by dividing the lid or cover into two parts, one of which is moveable up and down by means of a pedal governed by the foot of the player,
��a practice followed by Kirkman in his harpsi- chords, and perhaps by Shudi, until he introduced, about 1766, his important improvement of the Venetian Swell. Another patent of Plenius, in 1745, added the 'Welch harp,' or buff stop (in his patent by a pedal), to the instrument. We have thus dwelt upon the Lyrichord because as an ingenious combination of inventions its im- portance cannot be gainsaid. 1 Another 'Sosti- nente' harpsichord was the ' Celestina ' of Adam Walker, patented in London in 1772. An important ' Sostinente ' instrument was the ' Cla- viol' or 'Finger-keyed Viol,' the invention of Dr. John Isaac Hawkins of Bordertown, New Jersey, U. S. A., an Englishman by birth, who also invented the ever-pointed pencil, and, more to our purpose, the real upright pianoforte, which, in the article PIANOFORTE, we have erroneously attributed to his father, Isaac Hawkins, who we find merely patented the invention for his son in London in i8oo. a This upright piano (called ' portable grand ') and the ' Claviol,' which was in form like a cabinet piano, with ringbow mechanism for the sostinente, were introduced to the public in a concert at Philadelphia, by the inventor, June 21, 1802. There is a description of the Claviol in Rees's Cyclopaedia, 1819, and also in the Mechanic's Magazine for 1845, no. 1150, p. 123. About Hawkins himself there are interesting particulars in Scribner's Magazine (A.D. 1880), in an article on 'Bordertown and the Bonapartes.' Hawkins was in England in 1813 and 14, exhibiting his Claviol, and in the latter year complained of his idea being appro- priated by others through the expiration of his patent. He afterwards lived here and was a prominent member of the Institution of Civil Engineers. Isaac Mott's ' Sostinente Piano Forte,' patented by him in 1817, was a further deve- lopment of the idea, and is fully described in the patent, no. 4098. Mott claimed the power to increase or diminish the tone at will; and by rollers acting on silken threads, set in action by a pedal, the 'sostinente' was brought into action or stopped. Mott's instrument had some success, he being at the time a fashionable pianoforte- maker. This article should be read with PIANO- VIOLIN, which it completes; also with MBLO-
PIANO. 8 [A.J.H.]
SOTO, FRANCESCO, born 1534 at ^anga in Spain, entered the college of the Pope's Chapel June 8, 1562. He was a friend of St. Philip Neri, and in Dec. 1575 took the direction of the music in the Oratory founded by him. He also founded the first Carmelite convent in Rome. He published the 3rd and 4th books of Laudi Spirituali (1588, 1591) in continuation of the two edited by G. Animuccia, and died as Dean of the Pope's Chapel, Sept. 25, 1619.
Soto was greatly esteemed by Sixtus V. and was consulted by him as to the appointments to the chapel. [G.]
i Plenius It said to hare been the first to attempt to make a pianoforte in England.
- Messrs. Broadwood own one of these original upright Instru- ments.
s Mr. B. B. Prosser of the Patent Office has supplied the reference! to the Claviol.