Ref :   0789

A good Lady's Violin (7/8th)
Unknown Origin
Circa 1880
 
Probably German

 
 
 
 
 
 
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Lady's violin is a euphemism for a 7/8th size violin. Although technically such violins are undersized, they are not strictly aimed at children who are upgrading, but rather at adults of small stature, with smaller hands etc. but in particular at smaller women who find it uncomfortable to play on a full-size instrument. Children normally move from to full-size, skipping 7/8th, again indicating that 7/8th violins are not of necessity aimed at children.

In line with this logic, this violin conforms to very high standards of violinmaking. Although it evidently is a high-end studio instrument from around 1880 or even earlier, everything about it shows a quality consistent with the requirements of a mature and even professional musician. As much as a child would obviously benefit from such a violin, it is a massive cut above what is generally termed 'child's violin'.

At first glance it appears to be good old German trade work, supported by the dark brown varnish. However, the arching is not characteristically German in style, but rather French. Furthermore, there are tinges of a beautiful red in the dark brown, particularly in the back, which is slightly reminiscent of French work. But in reality the violin remains of unknown origin, fitted with an antiqued generic Stradivari label.

Everything about this violin pleases - above all the tone, which is strong, rich, mature, focused, even throughout the register and which has clarity and projection. What strikes one immediately is the exceptionally beautiful material chosen for the two-piece back and ribs - a nicely figured maple with a striking flame of medium curl - really good quality. The top is of excellent tone spruce with a narrow straight and fine grain. The neck and scroll are slightly less flamed. The varnish is dark brown with a lovely tinge of red in the back.

It is in superb condition structurally, without any cracks or repairs. It has several scratches, but these remain superficial with no structural implication.

I am particularly pleased to have this violin and to offer it here. There are very few instruments I would describe as a 'must have', but this is one of them.

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Dimensions :
  Length of back: 34.6 cm.
This classifies as a 7/8th violin, also referred to as a Lady's violin

Condition :
  Excellent condition with no cracks or repairs. Some scratches are superficial with no structural implication.

Provenance :
  Owned by Johan Grobbelaar

Price : Withheld
 

 
 
 
 

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