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Tuscan Stradivari Violin

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Among the violins described in the Hill book is a violin refered to as the Tuscan Strad. I recall that there a couple of photos. This is a very beautiful outline; but one can't really see very much. Where is this violin now? I have never heard anyone mention this violin when people speak of the great violins of Stradivari. The Hills describe it as quite special. Are there any drawings anywhere?

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In 1953, it was acquired by Italian Governement. It has belonged to the Accademia Santo Cecillia in Rome and been used by the eminent soloists Gioconda de Vito and Pina Carmirelli.

There are detail photos and data about the violin in the book "Strumenti di Anotonio Stradivari".

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Hi

There´s a book called "Strumenti di A. Stradivari", published in 1991 in Cremona (big red book)

It contains photos and measurements of the Tuscan Strad as well as the following paragraph about the instrument by Charles Beare:

Violin, Tuscan, 1690.

The year 1690 was an important one for Stradivari, and we were able to celebrate it at the 1987 Cremona exhibition with no fewer than four great instruments.

This remarkable and outstandingly well preserved violin almost certainly belonged to the Quintet ordered in 1684 by the Marquis Ariberti, to be presented to Prince Ferdinand, son of the Grand Duke of Tuscany.

The two violins and the cello were delivered in 1690, and were followed in the autumn of the same year by the two violas.

This violin was in 1891 the subject of a special publication by W.E Hill and Sons, in which it was described as almost in the same state as when it received the last finishing touches from Stradivari himself.

The enthusiasm of Prince Ferdinand did not carry far down his family line, and late in the 18th century the violin was in the posession of Gio: Felice Mosell, first violinist of the court, who saw fit to sell it in 1794 to an Irishman, Mr. David Ker.

In 1847 it was taken to Paris to be fitted up by Vuillaume, and in 1875 was sold by Ker´s descendants to an amateur named F. Ricardo, who had already had the use of it for many years.

In 1888 it was purchased by W.E Hill and Sons, and was succesively sold by them to R.E Brandt (1890), Charles Oldham (1904), F. Smith (1908), Richard Benett (1918) and G. Kemp (1933).

In 1940 Hills reacquired it again, selling it in 1953 to the Italian Government, since when it has belonged to the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome and been used by the eminent soloists Gioconda de Vito and Pina Carmirelli.

Martina

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It's on "Antonio Stradivari - the Cremona Exhibition of 1987" by Charles Beare, too.

I've seen the "special publication" by Hills, as well, but I cannot remember the title. It had the Tuscan and another later violin (Messiah?) in it. Can anybody remember?

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Charles Beare descrubes this as a"great violin" yet it was made in 1690, well before Stradivari's golden period. So what makes it great? What is it's sound like? Is it celebrated more for the craftsmanship and its condition?

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There's some great Strad stuff going on before the 'golden period'. One of the most stunning violins I have played is an early ( not very long) 'long pattern' strad from 1694. Kavakos plays on a later long pattern Strad if I'm not mistaken....

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I'm with Melving: Kavacos produces one of the best violin sound I've heard on a concert room on his long Strad. It was the the best sound I had ever heard but then I listened to Vadim Guzman playing his 1690 Strad (ex Auer) on NY last year, it's incredible the sound he produces on this violin, Mauricio was impressed also.

Guzman recorded some North American violin concerti with our local Orquestra (OSESP), it was not released yet but I'm sure I'll get it.

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Sorry to drag up an old thread, but why is the Tuscan a three-piece back? Is this repair work?

(Hi Manfio - I had the opportunity to play the ex-Auer in 1991. Fantastic instrument!)

1690TheTuscanback.jpg

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Sorry to drag up an old thread, but why is the Tuscan a three-piece back? Is this repair work?

Just a guess: that was a gorgeous piece of wood, and not quite wide enough to make the back. He couldn't stand to throw it away, so...

I have done this more than once, and it is almost never detected, though, except on the bass, the "wings" I added were not so big as these. I have one I am getting ready to do it on, now; a fellow gave me wood he had bought for a violin, and is not going to live long enough to make one. But when I went to prepare the pieces, I realized the back wood was not quite big enough. So it will be acquiring wings.

Chet

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I added the picture for reference (and since the older posts didn't retain images during the big switch.) This doesn't look like repair work to me - but why would strad use it? It is a gorgeous piece of wood, but I would figure those "as rich as Stradivari" would just move on to the next beautiful piece in the pile or, perhaps, make a pochette or fractional sized instrument. Someone give Tony a call ask for me, eh?

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I added the picture for reference (and since the older posts didn't retain images during the big switch.) This doesn't look like repair work to me - but why would strad use it? It is a gorgeous piece of wood, but I would figure those "as rich as Stradivari" would just move on to the next beautiful piece in the pile.

It's completely original. The addition of litle wings like this to billets of wood that were a bit too narrow is a not altoether uncommon feature in Strads and other old cremonese work as well as Venetian and other old Italian work of the time.

The evidence is that loking great wood was not always avialable to Strad and that the broad figured Balkan maple that feaures in his 'Golden' period was not available at other times. This wood even for Strad was very likely expensive and not so easy to obtain.

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The "wings" on Andrea Guarneri's "Primrose" viola are much bigger, I have no photo of it now, but they are very big, and it's a marvelous instrument too.

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I think there is a great photo of this violin in Stradivari’s Varnish.  This is the book that scientifically analyses Stead’s varnish.  I don’t have the book any more but I think the violin was made on the large pattern (g?) but I noticed it had ver very dark flame.  I tried in vain to copy it.  Peter white 

 

see below.  My version.  I’m just trying, I don’t sayits good but I did make the pattern and attempt the color. 

Edited by Peter White
Wanted to direct people to photo below

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On 7/9/2009 at 2:36 PM, MANFIO said:

The "wings" on Andrea Guarneri's "Primrose" viola are much bigger, I have no photo of it now, but they are very big, and it's a marvelous instrument too.

They do blend in really well!

 

60242960_AndreaGuarneriCremona1697thePrimroseLordHarringtonf_02725f.thumb.jpg.609cf607dfb643b99976aa897f610e50.jpg

Andrea Guarneri, Cremona, 1697, the 'Primrose, Lord Harrington'

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8 hours ago, FoxMitchell said:

They do blend in really well!

 

60242960_AndreaGuarneriCremona1697thePrimroseLordHarringtonf_02725f.thumb.jpg.609cf607dfb643b99976aa897f610e50.jpg

Andrea Guarneri, Cremona, 1697, the 'Primrose, Lord Harrington'

Other violas by Andrea Guarneri have wings in their backs too.

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24 minutes ago, MANFIO said:

Other violas by Andrea Guarneri have wings in their backs too.

Luis, If the cobwebs of my memory serve, you have the Bein and Fushi book on the Primrose.  Can you say anything about the photos and if any measurements are given?

Thanks,

Jim

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PM me with your email and I send you the photos.

The measurments are:
 
body length: 41.3
upper bout 19.3
middle bout 13.4
lower bout 24.5
stop 22.5
neck: 15 centimeters.

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