To make matters more confusing, the instrument is often referred to by its French name, the cor anglais, all for obscure reasons. About one-and-a-half times the size of the oboe, the English horn is immediately recognised by its pronounced, pear-shaped bell. The sound is similar to, if slightly less honky than, the oboe, thickening nicely in the lower register. It is both a mellow melody instrument and a handy softener for the wind section's overall texture.
The first thing always mentioned about the English horn, the alto of the double-reed family, is that it is neither English nor is it a horn.
Instrument: Cor Anglais
In this film, Jill Crowther introduces her instrument - the cor anglais.
Why not download our iPad app, 'The Orchestra', to learn even more? Visit www.philharmonia.co.uk/app for more information.
Did you know?
The earliest known orchestral part specifically for the instrument is in Niccolò Jommellis opera Ezio written around 1749.
165 - 932 Hz