A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Rank

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RANK. A rank of organ-pipes is one complete series or set, of the same quality of tone and kind of construction from the largest to the smallest, controlled by one draw-stop, acting on one slider. If the combined movement of drawstop and slider admits air to two or more such series of pipes, an organ-stop is said to be of two or more ranks, as the case may be. Occasionally the twelfth and fifteenth, or fifteenth and twenty-second, are thus united, forming a stop of two ranks; but, as a rule, only those stops whose tones are reinforcements of some of the higher upper-partials of the ground-tone are made to consist of several ranks, such as the Sesquialtera, Mixture, Furniture, etc. These stops have usually from three to five ranks each, reinforcing (according to their special disposition) the ground-tone by the addition of its 17th, 19th, 22nd, 24th, 26th, 29th, that is, of its 3rd, 5th, and 8th in the third and fourth octave above. [See Sesquialtera.]

[ J. S. ]