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How to discern where a violin is from on first glance.


pativarius
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I know this is a very broad topic, but I have been wondering what are some of the characteristics to help one discern immediately the likely origin of a certain violin (ex. France, Italy , Germany, etc.) Are there some certain basic qualities of each region that one can look for to help get started in this process?

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Not very learned myself but from what I've collected by reading some topics here, it seems very common to copy stiles when doing violins(Italian the most). So perhaps the question would be...how to discern a real italian violin from say a german copy?

Hope someone more learned adds more to this.

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You are listening to the radio and recognize the instrument that is being played. It is a piano, a modern piano. Then you think, well, it looks like French music. Two second laters you think: Debussy, and one second later the piece: "La Cathedral Engloutie". Some seconds later you recognize the pianist: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli. Of course that to do that you must have listened to lots of music. The process is the same with violins, you have to see many many during many years to reconize Schools, makers, etc.

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Welcome Pativarius,

Congratulations on your first post.

If we knew the answer to that question, we would all be experts.

Dont ne discouraged, but I dont think you are going to get a definitive answer to your question on this forum. There are so many variations in violin construction that, it is impossible to list them all. I would suggest that you buy some books on the subject and study all the nuances of as many makers and areas as you can.

There are many very knowledgable people on MN, you just have to ask the right questions.

Tony

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I know this is a very broad topic, but I have been wondering what are some of the characteristics to help one discern immediately the likely origin of a certain violin (ex. France, Italy , Germany, etc.) Are there some certain basic qualities of each region that one can look for to help get started in this process?

Patrick, Take a look at some of these useful threads compiled by Guy Gallo here:

identification

Rather than beginning with 'nationality' a good way to begin might be recognising basic models:

Stainer, Amati, Stradivari, Guarneri.

Try these outlines for starters:

15975360.jpg

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