Jump to content
Maestronet Forums

Mirecourt or Mittenwald


antero

Recommended Posts

A Happy New Year to everybody! first of all.

With these crappy as always picures I present for your opinion an instrument that could be either German or French, please tell what you think.

Inside pictures are of the bass side blocks, both lower and upper. Fragments of branding tell you, what is written insde - rather usual triangular statement. No other inscription anywhere.

Sound is good, it has been played a lot and repaired several times.

Thanks in advance!

IMG_4380.JPG

IMG_4381.JPG

IMG_4382.JPG

IMG_4386.JPG

IMG_4387.JPG

IMG_4388.JPG

IMG_4394.JPG

IMG_4389.JPG

Snapshot000001.jpg

Snapshot000003.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Jacob!

Well, yes, own guess would have been a (?) 1920s Laberte item - a copy of an early 19 c. Didier Nicolas the elder (Aine) workshop piece.

Didier Nicolas Aine was an early mass (prolific workshop, ok)  production anyway.

I guess that one piece bottom rib is never the singular item to decide upon, but just thought it – would be worth to check, whether these few Mittenwaldish indications would not make an interesting difference. Probabaly not.

But further. The trademark was used by several workshops over time. Would  any of you try to date it more precisely?

About 3-4 workhsop held this trademark over ca 150 years, , incl Laberte., as latest (is it so?).

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Compared with some folks here, I'm not a terribly astute violin indentifier.  (In fact I often feel more like an ass toot.)  But the back, as shown in your second picture, screamed "MIRECOURT!" at me.  I cannot put in words why, but it's probably because this is a fairly standard type of violin of which I've had a few and seen many more.  Look closely at the inside of the back near the sound post.  These violins are often signed in pencil and dated there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone!

It is a bit dusty inside, but as much as I tried, I could not find any inscription on the back, near soundpost or any other visible area. That is why I was hesitant to ascribe it to Nicolas' workshop or any other early one.

Yes, it has both one-piece front and back.

What about one-piece bottom rib and slightly inlet lower saddle?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 hours ago, antero said:

 

Snapshot000001.jpg

 

 

I don't really understand all the reasoning about signature etc., when it has got this absolutely clear brand - looks like parts of the usual A la ville de Cremone Nicolas aine brand. Very reliable here, and I agree that it looks like a more or less genuine mid 19th (or slightly earlier) Nicolas.

The inside work very typical for the period, too, built on the back with pre-installed corner blocks and sharpened tips of the linings over the blocks. This construction usually includes a one part lower rib. Everything fine and coherent IMO.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

40 minutes ago, Brad Dorsey said:

I have noticed that these D Nicolas violins often have one-piece fronts and backs.

Interesting! All or many of them?

Because there were many users of the brand:

A la ville de Crémone" fut l'enseigne de Didier Nicolas "l'aîné", Joseph Nicolas (son fils), Jean-Joseph Honoré Derazey, Justin Derazey, Paul Mangenot puis Laberte. Elle fut aussi utilisée par Charotte-Millot, Dominique Didelot, Nicolas Florentin, Nicolas Morlot, Jean Plumerel et Joseph Thiriot.

Does anybody know, until what time did Nicolas' family actually use it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, antero said:

I will measure and let you know tonight; the instrument is not at hand at the moment.

Would Peter perhaps like to comment the one-piece-front issue?

Very common on French instruments from 1830 to 1860, using high quality Swiss wood, than German wood imports took over.  Some Alpine stuff was still used occasionally , but tended to be of lower quality and wider grain as is occasionally seen on some of the one-piece "Caussin" (not really..) school. I bet it's the Swiss stuff on yours.

I bet yours is 362mm

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks, I will let you know soon.

Another small detail, irrelevant (probably) to the discussion above: it has an old and slightly warped bridge stamped J&A Beare. Does it hint that it was at some point sold/resold by Beare?

Bridge has to be changed soon; but some glueing first.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
  • 5 years later...
On 1/3/2018 at 12:05 AM, antero said:

Interesting! All or many of them?

Because there were many users of the brand:

A la ville de Crémone" fut l'enseigne de Didier Nicolas "l'aîné", Joseph Nicolas (son fils), Jean-Joseph Honoré Derazey, Justin Derazey, Paul Mangenot puis Laberte. Elle fut aussi utilisée par Charotte-Millot, Dominique Didelot, Nicolas Florentin, Nicolas Morlot, Jean Plumerel et Joseph Thiriot.

Does anybody know, until what time did Nicolas' family actually use it?

All

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lending a fiddle with a 361 mm LOB to someone learning to play is throwing him/her/it/whatever a screwball. Hills re-made those (as noted) for a reason. Keyboards (both typewriter and piano-organ types) have standard dimensions, for easy switching from one to another. When the notes are further apart, the whole left hand is back to square one to get the intonation right. And no, playing by ear for six months while re-learning is not viable for non-amateurs.

FWIW

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, A432 said:

Lending a fiddle with a 361 mm LOB to someone learning to play is throwing him/her/it/whatever a screwball. Hills re-made those (as noted) for a reason. Keyboards (both typewriter and piano-organ types) have standard dimensions, for easy switching from one to another. When the notes are further apart, the whole left hand is back to square one to get the intonation right. And no, playing by ear for six months while re-learning is not viable for non-amateurs.

FWIW

I’ve never quite understood why 361 is problematic when anything between 351 and 359 is permissible. 

If the issue is intonation, then the stop/string length would be the relevant measurement, not the back length.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

You're right, of course, Martin -- at least in theory. My comment was based on my first decent quality violin, one of the later 18th century oversized Mittenwalders (Joseph Kloz, 1782), which I had to play by ear without ever knowing why until much later -- its string length had been proportionate to its 360+ mm body length. Such niceties of adjustment as you perhaps take for granted today were not par for the course in the US smaller cities 70 years and more ago.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.


×
×
  • Create New...