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millant

No linings on ribs

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30 minutes ago, millant said:

I´m really more interested on the method of construction and characteristics than on who the maker was a I know this point will be really difficult to know... And if the characteristics led me to a school, circle, country or maker, I will happy of course.

In a pre 1800 period there were roughly said two construction methods, the first and probably slightly older building the ribs on the back without a form, sometimes with grooves in the bottom plate, sometimes with pre-installed blocks, and second the inside mould going out from Cremona.

Your's is clearly build on the back without any preinstalled blocks, and this method was used nearly everywhere in the European violin making. Even leaving the ribs without linings was used at many places, for example in the "Allemannische Schule" in Switzerland or SW Germany, Salzkammergut, Füssen, Tyrol like Jacob pointed out and as we heard in England or France, too, so this won't give any clue about a particular school or region. To assume Italy as origin for an old and somehow interesting instrument might be tantalising, but without hard evidence this is pointless and often just for monetary reasons (s. the many alleged Marianis).

Also an ancient or archaic construction could have been used still during a period when most of the makers adepted one of the more "advanced" methods, either by some amateurs or at some more or less isolated places, so this construction isn't any evidence for a particular early date, too.

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With all respect to Jacob, I don't think dendro would be a waste of time. As I understand information that Peter Ratcliffe has often shared, top wood used in England and Holland before the 19thc was quite distinct from that used in France, which again was distinct form that used in southern German, Austria and Italy. If the top of this violin yields a strong signal, it could be possible to narrow down this violin's region of origin. Don't neglect Piedmont and Liguria as possible places of origin, and take a careful look at that back/rib joint. Many fine early Turin and Genoa violins have ribs let into the back, and it can be hard to tell without disassembly...

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How important is it to keep that superb old glue joint intact ?

Looking at the general condition of the glue and its patina what sort of age is it ?

 

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I don't think that the glue is very old - very old hide glue has a tendency to collect dirt and become crackled if applied in big drops. The overall condition of the violin seems to be restored and cleaned not long ago, so they might have taken everything apart and reglued it new.

If there are grooves for the ribs is usually to spot in the end of the corners, either if the channels are going to the end of the plate corner or the ribs are sort of disappearing into the plate. I believe that I can see the end of a groove at the upper treble side corner at the photo of the right f-hole, but not for 100% sure.

What made me think of old English were the purfling and some aspects of outline (bouts) and form of the corners being similar to Ben Hebberts Pamphillon, but this doesn't mean necessarily much. I'm also doubting that it's 17th century (or it's exceptionally well preserved, revarnished at some point?), but if you acquired it in the UK there's a good probability that it was made there, too.

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20 hours ago, Delabo said:

How important is it to keep that superb old glue joint intact ?

Looking at the general condition of the glue and its patina what sort of age is it ?

 

Hello Delabo,

I think opening the violin in case of a problem o repair work will involve taking off the top plate for sure; I´m not expert al all but I suppose the old glue joint is secure and nobody will want to break or open it, better to keep for as long as possible. I don´t really know how old is it...

The violin is now a very repaired condition including a soundpost back repaired crack. Otherwise back is in good condition; top plate has been repaired too (a couple cracks) and one of the ribs has been reinforced from inside. 

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Hi all,

I have just received successful dendro results. These results suggest that the violin was probably made in Italy at the end of 17th. century (North Italy) the earliest possible year of manufacture of the violin being c. 1663. Best matches include instruments attributed to Goffriller, Landolfi and Stradivari. 

I know the opinions and debate can long and probably improductive (but always interesting) but I think it was my obligation with all contributors to offer this data. I know this data are not conclusive and do not constitute evidence at all.  Feel free to comment of course.

 

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Now, all you have to do is find a reference example of a North Italin violin of the period, with archaic soundholes, no linings and (probably) a through neck. Good luck with that.

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This reading might be interesting and it's listing some ofthe early Piemontese makers, pointing out that they followed the north-alpine way of constructing the ribs in channels and using a through neck. Also their models were rather small. Though in my eyes a Cattenar seems to be made much more refined, it could be worth the effort to look for dorsal pins in the center line of the bottom, since he had adepted these from the Amati school.

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/cozio-carteggio/violin-making-in-turin-part-1-1650-1770/

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On 9/23/2019 at 2:58 PM, Blank face said:

This reading might be interesting and it's listing some ofthe early Piemontese makers, pointing out that they followed the north-alpine way of constructing the ribs in channels and using a through neck. Also their models were rather small. Though in my eyes a Cattenar seems to be made much more refined, it could be worth the effort to look for dorsal pins in the center line of the bottom, since he had adepted these from the Amati school.

https://tarisio.com/cozio-archive/cozio-carteggio/violin-making-in-turin-part-1-1650-1770/

Thanks Blank for your suggestion. I can not see any dorsal pins on this violin by the moment... and I ignore if It had a through neck in the past. Very interesting article, thanks.

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An off center button (seam) is not a negative when one is looking at violins like this, that is, old and of overall high quality. There are many fine old violins that are off center, asymetric, twisted, skewed etc. Some of the attributes one might look for in modern industrial age work should be put on the back shelf when looking at 300 year old hand work.

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Another fact is that button outlines were often altered when replacing an old neck. So an assymetrical button joint is often the result of an assymetrical new neck heel or an off-centred mortise and not necassarily indicating something about the bottom joint.

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I'd be very curious to see what the outcome of a dendrochronological analysis would be. It looks like good wood and should produce an excellent result. With that in mind, the cross-matches that come from it could be highly informative. I wouldn't be sceptical of it in the least. 

I agree with the general sentiments here. One thing I would say is that 345mm (or thereabouts) is a regular measurement found in English violins of the seventeenth century. The problem with them is that I know of about ten famous 17th century English makers through documents for whom no work whatsoever is known. Furthermore, I think in this early period, you can often see traits that cross over a variety of countries. Christopher Wise's work is remarkably similar to both Tielke in Hamburg and that in turn seems quite similar to Groblicz and Dankwart in Poland and Lithuania. 

I keep telling people that "I don't know" can mean two different things, it can mean exactly that, or that I know exactly which city, decade and pub the maker drank in, just not which of them. 

Enjoy! :)

 

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4 hours ago, Ben Hebbert said:

I'd be very curious to see what the outcome of a dendrochronological analysis would be. It looks like good wood and should produce an excellent result. With that in mind, the cross-matches that come from it could be highly informative. I wouldn't be sceptical of it in the least. 

I agree with the general sentiments here. One thing I would say is that 345mm (or thereabouts) is a regular measurement found in English violins of the seventeenth century. The problem with them is that I know of about ten famous 17th century English makers through documents for whom no work whatsoever is known. Furthermore, I think in this early period, you can often see traits that cross over a variety of countries. Christopher Wise's work is remarkably similar to both Tielke in Hamburg and that in turn seems quite similar to Groblicz and Dankwart in Poland and Lithuania. 

I keep telling people that "I don't know" can mean two different things, it can mean exactly that, or that I know exactly which city, decade and pub the maker drank in, just not which of them. 

Enjoy! :)

 

Hi Ben, 

Thanks for your opinion as always. I posted the dendro results on September 23. You probably missed it. What do you think? 

"Hi all,

I have just received successful dendro results. These results suggest that the violin was probably made in Italy at the end of 17th. century (North Italy) the earliest possible year of manufacture of the violin being c. 1663. Best matches include instruments attributed to Goffriller, Landolfi and Stradivari. 

I know the opinions and debate can be long and probably improductive (but always interesting) but I think it was my obligation with all contributors to offer this data. I know this data are not conclusive and do not constitute evidence at all.  Feel free to comment of course"

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That’s pretty cool dendro, but what we should understand is that there is a certain bias in the database towards Italian sources, because those are most of what has been measured, so most things that are nebulous tend to seem to swing towards Italy. 

Well, it’s still a sexy violin... I ain’t got no more opinions than that, but I would cherish seeing it again :) 

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