A time, a place, an instrument builder, an instrument. In mid-19th century Paris, Claude Laurent devised one of the most extraordinary and captivating instruments in Europe, a flute made of glass and silver that would fascinate the attention of aristocrats, eminent musicians and illustrious politicians. This flute, one of the two held at the museum, is decorated with seven pieces of amethyst and an almandine garnet gemstone on the keys. They were, therefore, the most luxurious of instruments, beyond the reach of all but the most fortunate few. The flute, as well as being a sophisticated work of art, is in very good condition and has been played in concerts. Its flawless sound is pure and clear.