Charles Joseph Bizey (c1695--1758) was a leading French maker of woodwind instruments. He was admitted into the Communautes d'arts et metier de la ville et fauxbourgs de Paris (Paris community of master makers) in 1716). In 1721 he supplied two oboes to the Munich court. By 1734 he was located at rue Mazarine, Saint Sulpice and was highly regarded as an expert in valuing other makers' instruments.  Bizey was the first of a 'dynasty' of woodwind makers that continued at the rue Daulphine until 1812. Prudent Thieriot served a six-year apprenticeship with him, and Bizey came to consider him as his son. Prudent married Bizey's sister-in-law and on Bizey's death became master of the workshop, which was eventually bought by Dominique Porthaux who had also married into the family. Although this dynasty of makers were renowned for all types of woodwinds, they specialized in reed instruments of the highest quality. Bizey used the marks 'fleur-de-lis/BIZEY' and 'fleur-de-lis/BIZEY/A PARIS/sun', and both Villars and Prudent adopted the fleur-de-lis of their master's mark. Bizey was noted for his exceptionally fine oboes.  He was also among the first in France to make four-piece flutes, as opposed to the Hotteterre/Naust/Chevalier style of three pieces.


About 31 instruments with his mark survive, including three recorders as well as various flutes, a five-key bass flute, oboes, oboes da caccia, bassoons and rackets. These show him to be a maker of the highest order, one of the finest French woodwind instrument makers of the 18th century.  His only surviving alto recorder is pitched at the French Opera Pitch of A392 and is in the Dayton Miller Collection in Washington DC.  Ever since Fred Morgan made the first copies of this instrument in the 70's and left his plans, almost all recorders made at A392 have been of this instrument, by such makers as Peter van der Poel, Adrian Brown, and Philippe Bolton. Recently,  von Huene has begun offering a Scherer scaled down to A392 (original is A410) and Ehlert has made Bressan altos at A392 (original is A403).  Jacqueline Sorel offers a scaled down Debey at A392 as well.  Interestingly, the only other original recorder at such a low pitch, by Louis Hotteterre, is also in the Dayton Miller Collection.

MakerRecorder ModelRecorder SizePitchMaterialPieces




List Price


Fred Morgan/Ronimus Bizey


392 European Boxwood w/Ivory thumb bushing Three Double English Used, as New - in excellent condition! Fred Morgan body, voicing by Nicolaj Ronimus! $3750 $3750
Philippe BoltonBizey (X)
Alto392Stained BoxwoodThreeDoubleEnglishUsed - Has lovely reedy tone for French music. $1550 SOLD!
to the gentleman in Japan
Peter van der PoelBizey
Alto392BoxwoodThreeDoubleEnglishNew - Has lovely dark tone for French music. $1650 SOLD! 7/15/2003
(personal collection)
Charles Bizey (DMC 1055)Brown, Original,
Philippe Bolton
Bolton, Original, Brown

End view of the original labium