Alto saxophone

about 1848
Adolphe Sax (French (born in Belgium), 1814–1894)

Object Place: Paris, France


Approximate length of air column 105 cm (41 5/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


On View

Musical Instrument Gallery (Gallery 103D)


Europe, Musical Instruments


Musical instruments, Aerophones

Alto in E-flat. Conoidal tube of brass with downward bent mouth-pipe and upturned bell; detachable mouthpiece. Eighteen tone-holes of various diameters covered by keys with chamois pads. Two independent octave keys.

Music: Fantaisie sur il pleut bergère by Paul Agricole Génin, about 1873 (performed by Peter H. Bloom on an alto saxophone by Adolphe Sax, Paris, about 1860, from the Marlowe Sigal Collection)


Engraved on bell: Adolphe Sax & Cie. a Paris. 5828


Francis W. Galpin (1858-1945), Hatfield Regis, England; 1916, sold by Francis W. Galpin to William Lindsey (1858-1922), Boston, Massachusetts; 1916, gift of William Lindsey, in memory of his daughter, Leslie Lindsey Mason, to the MFA. (Accession Date: October 5, 1916)

Credit Line

Leslie Lindsey Mason Collection