Guido

Violin ID - Prague?

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I'd be keen to learn where and when this violin may have been made.

It has had a hard life and shows some heavy repairs, incl. patched sound post cracks to both the top and the back.

It bears a repair label from Nechanice, 1913, a small town about 100km East of Prague.

LOB is 35.6mm.

It has a curiously narrow neck of 19.7mm at the nut. Any sense in that? Or any place and time where one may have seen sense in that?

 

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I was just trolling the net for violins from Prague while there doesn't seem to be much activity on MN in relevant time zones at the moment.

Could I have - by any chance - a Ferdinand Lantner, second half of 19th century? Wild newB guess with two blind eyes.

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  • I will have to ask the usual 2 questions: are the linings let into the corner blocks, and how far into the throat is the scroll fluted?

     

    Otherwise I do not recognise a particular maker, but expect it to be more rural Bohemia or Austria

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3 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:
  • I will have to ask the usual 2 questions: are the linings let into the corner blocks, and how far into the throat is the scroll fluted?

     

    Otherwise I do not recognise a particular maker, but expect it to be more rural Bohemia or Austria

Thanks Jacob.

The scroll fluting stops at about 7 o'clock. There is a bit of butchering going on all the way but the centre ridge is not continued beyond 7 o'clock.

The linings are not let into the corner blocks. Initially I thought they might but I had another look and they are clearly not.

Could this be a purchased rib garland (or more) as you describe from the remains of the Trostler/ Zach estate? Of course not referring to these makers, just the practice.

One last question: I have mixed up and enjoy using your violin polish. This violin here has a fair bit of varnish worn off and bare wood exposed. Could I still use it in this case?

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10 hours ago, Guido said:

Thanks Jacob.

The scroll fluting stops at about 7 o'clock. There is a bit of butchering going on all the way but the centre ridge is not continued beyond 7 o'clock.

The linings are not let into the corner blocks. Initially I thought they might but I had another look and they are clearly not.

Could this be a purchased rib garland (or more) as you describe from the remains of the Trostler/ Zach estate? Of course not referring to these makers, just the practice.

One last question: I have mixed up and enjoy using your violin polish. This violin here has a fair bit of varnish worn off and bare wood exposed. Could I still use it in this case?

Yes, certainly you can use my polish on the bare bits.

There are an alarming amount of instruments which one may call "Bohemian" with a question mark, but will be unable to identify as being from a particular maker.

BTW; In Prague, which you mentioned, I would expect let-in linings and scroll-fluting "To the bitter end"

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Jiř Štoček worked in Nechanice (Jalovec)
Violin I think the Czech manufactory and you were doing in the Schonbach area

Similar headers for these, I've seen them a lot

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1 hour ago, violinoalto said:

Jiř Štoček worked in Nechanice (Jalovec)
Violin I think the Czech manufactory and you were doing in the Schonbach area

Similar headers for these, I've seen them a lot

Funny you should say that. The violin actually has a repair ("Opravil") label from Štoček, dated 1913.

The major repairs this violin has had (sound post patch back and front and many other cracks to the top) all look very old and I thought those repairs would have been done by Štoček in 1913. On account of that, I would have thought the violin was a fair bit older.

It does not have a through-neck and the bass bar doesn't look as if it was carved out. Maybe Štoček also put in a new neck and used a purchased part from Schoenbach?

Who knows. In any case, the violin looks and feels quite different to the many trade violins from Markneukirchen/ Schoenbach that I have and had.

Are you aware of any makers before Štoček from this area? Maybe the violin hasn't travelled much before Štoček got it for repair.

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47 minutes ago, Guido said:

 

It does not have a through-neck and the bass bar doesn't look as if it was carved out. Maybe Štoček also put in a new neck and used a purchased part from Schoenbach?

Who knows. In any case, the violin looks and feels quite different to the many trade violins from Markneukirchen/ Schoenbach that I have and had.

 

The Schönbach/Markneukirchen period ca. 1870-1900 was in some way a transition from the old through-neck-carved-bar working methods to the more modern (i.e., for the demand of the Strad-orientated international market) style. Your violin would fit exactly in this scheme, some reminders of the old models like the ff and C-bouts, one piece back etc. combined with a morticed neck and glued in bar. I've had some of similar type. I wouldn't overthink it too much.  It could have had an early Prokop, Gebrüder Placht or Wenzel Hoyer label.

BTW, the sloped rib joints look IMO more like a BOB construction.

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