There are very few inventions in human history that have fallen into such obscurity as water operated music and sound machines. In modern times, various forms of hydraulic machines were developed from an ancient instrument, the water organ. They operated completely autonomously and were able to imitate natural sounds and animal noises or even play complex musical compositions.
The present book is the first to systematically examine the phenomenon of water-operated sound production, from antiquity to the present, and to expand on its importance for European landscape gardening. A main emphasis is placed on automated water systems used during the Renaissance and Baroque eras in spacious, prestigious gardens. Physical, sociological and musicological points of view augment the easily understandable historical explanations related to art and gardening. An audio CD resurrects the lost long sound world of the hydraulic machines.