A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Basset-Horn
BASSET-HORN (Fr. Cor de Bassette; Ital. Corno di Bassetto; Germ. Bassethorn).
Mozart is the composer who has written most for this instrument. In one great work, his 'Requiem,' it replaces the clarinet, there being independent parts for two players. Perhaps the finest instance of its use is in the opening of the 'Recordare.' In his opera 'Clemenza di Tito' it is also employed, and a fine obbligato is allotted to it in the song 'Non piu di fiori.' In his chamber music there are often parts for two or even three bassethorns.Mendelssohn has also written for it, especially two concert-pieces for clarinet and bassethorn, op. 113 and 114, intended to be played by the Bärmanns, father and son, with pianoforte accompaniment. Other composers have occasionally employed it, but it is to be regretted that it has never taken so prominent a place in orchestral music as its fine tone and facility of execution entitle it to hold. It is often confused with the Cor Anglais, or English horn, which is an oboe of similar pitch to the Bassethorn.
[ W. H. S. ]