"Bugle" or "Bonnafont" Ear Trumpet (Ear Horn)
This "bugle" tin ear trumpet was so called because of its
somewhat similar shape to a bugle. Alternately, it was called a
Bonnafont ear trumpet after famed French otologist Jean Pierre Bonnafont (1805–1891) who invented this design
somewhere around 1850. Bonnafont decided the extreme length of some ear
trumpets then in current use both inconvenient and unnecessary. He
folded the tube of the trumpet into four right-angles to make a much
more compact ear trumpet.
There is no manufacturer's mark or name on this fairly large "bugle" ear
trumpet, but it likely dates from around 1890.
It stands 8¾" high, while the bell opening
is 4⅛". This tin ear trumpet weighs 5½ oz.
Bugle-shaped ear trumpets were one attempt to make the traditional
straight (long) ear trumpets more compact (and thus also less visible).
Stretched out, this ear trumpet would be about 20 inches long.
However, the many "corners" in the bugle reduced the amount of
amplification these ear trumpets produced as compared to straight tube