Ref :   0804

A good French violin by
Charles Collin-Mézin fils
(1870 - 1934)
Ambroise, 1924

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Much of the confusion that exists at times in separating the work of Collin-Mézin the father from that of his son is rooted in the fact their labels closely resemble each other's, that the son at times used the father's labels (they worked together as a family after all) and that both had the practice of signing their instruments in the back - the father usually signed at the soundpost and the son a little further back. Furthermore, their signatures closely resemble each other's.

It is generally accepted that the work of the father, Charles Jean Baptiste, is considered more desirable than that of the son, Charles Collin-Mézin (1870-1934) who established a studio in Mirecourt after returning from the USA in 1900, but continued labelling instruments as if from Paris. However, the son was capable of outstandingly work and was highly skilled. His instruments are much sought after by orchestra and chamber musicians.

This violin, although labelled as if by the father ('Ch. J. B.' C-M), can only be that of the son, as it was made a year after the father's death, in 1924. It is signed in the back. It shows great finesse in craftsmanship with beautiful lines and proportions.

The materials are well-chosen for visual appeal - the one-piece back is attractive with its straight well-figured medium curled maple, used also in the ribs, neck and scroll. The top is of good medium grained tone spruce. The varnish is a lovely red-brown complimenting the materials well. A nice touch is the original palisander pegs with their gold caps - an indicator of quality. The tail-piece and chinrest are modern, but of rosewood to match the pegs.

This violin was recently found in a state of neglect and required some work to get it into a playing order. When found it was still fitted with gut strings (!) which means that it had not been played on for at least 60 to 70 years.

This is a very good violin with excellent tonal properties - clear and strong, well-focused and with projection.


Dimensions :
  Length of back: 35.7 cm

Condition :
  Excellent. Free from cracks. Some superficial scratches have no structural impact. The violin has not been played for around 60 to 70 years.

Provenance :
  Recently found in a small town in the Free State. Now the property of Johan Grobbelaar.

Price : Withheld


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