Antique Musical Instruments/Couesnon Instrument


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QUESTION: I have a Couesnon instrument (bugle? trumpet?) and have done some internet research on the company and its instruments, but cannot find any information on this particular design. It is 21" long and approximately 9.5 " tall. Many sites refer to a number inside the imprinted pineapple/grenade shape to determine the age of the instrument; a 5 being 1905, a 23 being 1923 etc., until later in the 1900's when serial number were used. This  instrument has no number inside the grenade. Is it possible to determine the age of the instrument by its shape?  If so, what would you estimate the age of this instrument might be? Also, is it bugle or a trumpet? There are 3 circular loops inside the bends of the instrument and my guess is that while two of them were for a strap, I'm not sure what the third one was for. Lastly, is the mouthpiece original to the instrument.I thank you in advance for any information you can provide.

ANSWER: About all that can be determined is that it is a bugle. It appears to be a low bugle.  Soprano bugles are typically in G, and this one would also be in G, but an octave below.  It is difficult to tell about the mouthpiece from the picture, but it appears to be too small for the instrument.  It should take a mouthpiece roughly the size of a trombone mouthpiece.

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Other side of bugle
Other side of bugle  

Mouthpiece area
Mouthpiece area  
QUESTION: Thanks you for the prompt answer.
A few other questions and I can also upload 2 more pictures:

Is there a significance of the letter C under the engraving on the bell?
There is the letter N stamped on the bugle where the mouthpiece fits into the bugle. Do you know what significance that may have?
Did the length of the bugle and number of loops (4)  determine that it is a low bugle?

Thanks again in advance.

I don't have an answer on the letters engraved on it.  

The pitch of the bugle is determined by the length of the tubing.  It doesn't really matter how the tubing is wrapped.  If you measure the length of the tubing of a soprano bugle (as if the tubing is straightened out), it will measure around 62 inches.  A low bugle is going to measure around 128 inches.

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Kenton Scott


Please note: My area is BRASS instruments, not other wind, string or percussion instruments. I will provide information on antique, obscure and out of production BRASS instruments. 1) Please don't ask for evaluations, I'll not provide them on this site. 2) I am often asked very similar questions, so I'd invite you to first check on Much of the information I have garnered about this topic, I have posted on this WEB site.


I perform in several historical bands, have informally researched the area, repair brass instruments, and operate a Forum dedicated to the topic at

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