The English horn is about a third bigger than the oboe and has a pear-shaped bell in contrast to the latter’s gently flaring one.
Like the oboe, its tube – or body – consists of three parts, one inserted inside the other: upper joint (head joint), lower joint and bell (also called the “liebesfuss”).
The upper joint turns into a small metal pipe, about 7.5 cm long, to which the double-reed mouthpiece is affixed. The reeds on the English horn are wider and longer than on the oboe (on the Viennese model the reeds are wider, but shorter).
As on the oboe the most commonly used keywork is the French conservatoire mechanism developed by Frédéric Triébert in Paris in 1875. Most of the keys are on the upper and lower joints; there is only one key on the bell.