Jump to content

Johann Georg Leeb Pressburg


jacobsaunders
 Share

Recommended Posts

The family Leeb was represented by several makers in the Vienna/Pressburg area in the later part of the 18th. and the early 19th C. Probably the two best ones were Johann Georg in Pressburg, and Andreas Carl in Vienna, who Lütgendorff suspects is Johann Georg’s son. Working out who was related to whom, and to what degree, has only been (superficially) done by Lütgendorff, and all other authors to this day simply copy him, so one can only hope that Hempel gets the urge to do some genealogical research, and casts some light on this.

 

Pressburg is the next larger town, after Vienna, downstream on the Danube, and it is nowadays known as Bratislava, and is the capital of Slovakia. Back in the times of the Austro-Hungarian Empire it was the royal residence of the King of Hungary. Pressburg (the German name) is called Pozsony in Hungarian, and in Latin either Posonium or Istropolis

 

While the Viennese violin makers of the 17th & 18th C, almost to a man, came from Füssen stock, this started to change at the end of the 18th C. when they came more from Hungary, Slovakia Moravia and Bohemia instead. As Andreas Carls son Johann Carl died aged 27 in 1819, his widow married Anton Fischer from “Tyrnau aus Ungarn” (today Trnava in Slovakia) which suggests that they all knew each other from back home (Fischer who I wrote about here https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/346509-joseph-fischer-regensburg/&do=findComment&comment=901808 ) In the early 19th C. there were some other, very much “Viennese” makers in Pressburg, such as Ertl or Hamberger.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One can spend decades thinking that these old 18th and 19th C Viennese (and surroundings) labels are printed, but they weren’t. They are in fact hand-written to imitate print, and these label writers were indeed skilled craftsmen.

 

When one studies repeatedly used letters (there are 4 “O”, 3 “N”, 5 “E”, 2 “S” and 4 “I” to compare) one discoverers that by comparing various serif etc., that they certainly are not from the same printing stock.

 

Leeb evidently had a profuse amount of labels written up, since the label writer had written a 17, to be supplemented with the last two numbers, which Leeb, after 1800 had to try to wangle into an 8, with more or less success.

 

One can also see that the “1” meaning one thousand was written such ”I” whereas the one, meaning the single number was written as an “i” with a dot on it. Different ones on labels of this area and period are unmistakeable proof of a fake label, the illustrated label is just as it should be

 

 

 

 

Leeb Pressburg label.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Johann Georg Leeb in Pressburg is a name that one monotonously sees on Fahrkarten in Mark/Schön boxes, so it is important to know what a real one looks like, since they are easy to tell apart.

 

From a violin-making point ot view, J. G. Leeb is very much a late 18th C Viennese maker. The pine blocks and linings have the middle bout linings let into the right-angle triangle corner blocks with a point, the back joint is reinforced with a parchment strip, the one piece bottom rib with a (rather modest) “Mittenwald” notch, the high ribs measuring 32mm at the end pin and 31mm at the neck root, the scroll fluting going to “the bitter end”. What makes him distinctive from many of his contemporary colleagues, are firstly the arching, which is rather low (what some clueless people call “Amatise”), and secondly his penchant for long corners. The eyes of the scrolls tend not to be rounded off much, giving them a “squarish” look

P:S: I have ordered some new gut strings, but they are "out of stock" at the moment

1574771074_LeebPressburgboden.jpg

Leeb Pressburg decke.jpg

Leeb Pressburg Schnecke Profil diskant.jpg

Leeb Pressburg Schnecke rucken.jpg

Leeb Pressburg Schecke vorne.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, RVR said:

Hello,
can you say, on what area and for what period of time 'i' was used instead of 'I', and if 'i' was used at each place of the date (ixii)?

We went over this point once before here (and the subsequent posts) https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/328294-emanuel-adam-homolka/&do=findComment&comment=587555

 

Please tell me if that doesn't answer your question

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

The family Leeb was represented by several makers in the Vienna/Pressburg area in the later part of the 18th. and the early 19th C. Probably the two best ones were Johann Georg in Pressburg, and Andreas Carl in Vienna, who Lütgendorff suspects is Johann Georg’s son. Working out who was related to whom, and to what degree, has only been (superficially) done by Lütgendorff, and all other authors to this day simply copy him, so one can only hope that Hempel gets the urge to do some genealogical research, and casts some light on this.

22 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

Leeb evidently had a profuse amount of labels written up, since the label writer had written a 17, to be supplemented with the last two numbers, which Leeb, after 1800 had to try to wangle into an 8, with more or less success.

Lütgendoff asserts there are two Johann Georg Leebs who were instrument makers.  There is only one if you take both of his entries into account, considering the evidence from primary sources.

Johann Georg Leeb (age 20) married Maria Anna Haymerl on October 10, 1779 at St. Martin's Catheral in Pressburg.  His occupation "Lautenmacher" was recorded, but unfortunately his parents weren't.  This would make JGL's birth c. 1759.  This marriage date coincides to when Lütgendorff states JGL "(I)" received his citizenship rights in Pressburg. About 1/3 down the right page (free acct to view):

https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-GRQ1-R1M?i=438&wc=9P3P-N3V%3A107654301%2C107722701%2C123570801%2C124034601&cc=1554443

JGLeeb_marriage.thumb.png.9dbac14199477accb712cdd64af15ccf.png

Note that one of the witnesses to this wedding is a "typographus" named Joseph Renner.  Probably the bloke who made JGL's labels.

JGL would go on to have several children starting in 1780.

Andreas Karl Leeb was married only six or so years later in Vienna, to Josefa Handelsberger in January 1785, at age 29.  This means AKL is actually slightly older than JGL.  According to this marriage entry Andreas Karl's parents names were Johann and Maria Anna (née Sommer).  His father's profession was "tafeldecker," a footman (closest English analog that occurred to me). recorded, but I'm having difficulty deciphering it.

Third entry:

https://data.matricula-online.eu/en/oesterreich/wien/01-am-hof/02-01/?pg=33

Unfortunately the church registers in Pressburg and Tyrnau are not well indexed, which makes finding both their parents difficult. (We aren't even certain which parish in Tyrnau to start.)

Here is an advert placed by Andreas Karl Leeb in the November 8, 1786 issue of Wiener Zeitung.  He specifies that he has Stainer and Leidolff instruments at his workshop located at "hohen Brücke im Baaderischen Haus."

leeb_ad.png.62ac38fbbe63dff69b548620990ed1d1.png

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

One can spend decades thinking that these old 18th and 19th C Viennese (and surroundings) labels are printed, but they weren’t. They are in fact hand-written to imitate print, and these label writers were indeed skilled craftsmen.

 

When one studies repeatedly used letters (there are 4 “O”, 3 “N”, 5 “E”, 2 “S” and 4 “I” to compare) one discoverers that by comparing various serif etc., that they certainly are not from the same printing stock.

 

Leeb evidently had a profuse amount of labels written up, since the label writer had written a 17, to be supplemented with the last two numbers, which Leeb, after 1800 had to try to wangle into an 8, with more or less success.

 

One can also see that the “1” meaning one thousand was written such ”I” whereas the one, meaning the single number was written as an “i” with a dot on it. Different ones on labels of this area and period are unmistakeable proof of a fake label, the illustrated label is just as it should be

 

 

 

 

Leeb Pressburg label.jpg

Thanks for this very detailled and enlightening explanations. To prove the point as comparison another (slightly damaged) label from a reliable internet source (I forgot which). The differences between the letters are somehow subtle but obvious. It also shows the undisturbed "7" as it should be at this period, without the small middle line from later times.

img_519641eb316f2.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Update: I was able to decipher Andreas Karl Leeb's father's profession. "Tafeldecker" according to various German dictionaries, is a servant who is mainly tasked with tablesetting.  I suppose the nearest English equivalent is footman.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If I may try to summarise the genealogical knowledge we now have for certain (please correct me), with Hempels contribution, but also such sources as the Österreichische Musiklexicon https://www.musiklexikon.ac.at/ml/musik_L/Leeb_Andreas.xml etc.

 

-Johann Georg L would have been born around 1759, since he married in 1779 as a 20 year old

 

-Andreas Karl L. would have been born around 1756, since he married in 1785 as a 29 year old

 

- We know that Andreas Karl died 6.9.1805 in Vienna, and his widow continued the business until her death in 1817, but no exact date is known when Johann Georg passed away. Lüttgendorff who presumes 2 individuals named Johann Georg, speculates with deaths in 1810 and 3rd March 1817

-Andreas Karl is in the Viennese Tax record for 1800, which we documented here https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/345298-peg-placement-in-a-bushed-peg-box-jacob-petz-vienna/&do=findComment&comment=894095

- We have no record of wheather these two were related, and if so to what degree, but I would almost expect it

- Andreas Karl had two sons, Jakob, who was a “Singerknabe” for Esterhasy, before becoming a civil servant, and Johann Carl, who was a violin maker who worked until his death in 1819

 

It is rare to see an instrument from Andreas Karl pre1800. One could assume, based on the advertisement in the Wiener Zeitung that Hempel posted above, that he might have been preoccupied with dealing in antique instruments, rather than making new ones.

 

I have noticed over the years, that probably over a half (I haven’t kept a statistic) of the Johann Georg Leeb violins that I have seen are from the year 1797, and I have no explanation.

 

Incidentally, the Österreichische Musiklexicon have an interesting article on the history and musical development of Pressburg (Possony/Bratislava), for those who understand German https://www.musiklexikon.ac.at/ml/musik_P/Pressburg.xml

 

 

Of the later Pressburg makers I mentioned, I have a Joseph Hamberger violin somewhere, which I could illustrate if anybody would like, although I will have to look for it first

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, jacobsaunders said:

- We know that Andreas Karl died 6.9.1805 in Vienna, and his widow continued the business until her death in 1817, but no exact date is known when Johann Georg passed away. Lüttgendorff who presumes 2 individuals named Johann Georg, speculates with deaths in 1810 and 3rd March 1817

- Andreas Karl had two sons, Jakob, who was a “Singerknabe” for Esterhasy, before becoming a civil servant, and Johann Carl, who was a violin maker who worked until his death in 1819.

If JGL died on 3rd March 1817 his death is not mentioned in the St. Martin parish death records.  (There are other parishes in Pressburg.)

I vaguely recall the Viennese Lautenmacher (Guild) Charter limited the time a widow could carry on business.  If that's true, I almost have to wonder how Josefa managed to get a twelve-year exemption.  Granted Johann Karl no doubt helped her.

I think there's not much to dispute for the rest of your summary. The probate records for AKL and his wife Josefa still exist at the Viennese archives. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Published in the Preßburger Zeitung 7/7/1823:

georg_leeb_2.png.a7f847ba869f4b24ea0b6ee4f5f41082.png

This published remark would indicate that Johann Georg Leeb had a son Georg (b. 5/5/1791) that carried on the business after his death, and that the younger Georg was still alive in 1823, past the 3/3/1817 date specified by Lütgendorff. 

Lower right:

https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9R7W-96MW?i=260&cc=1554443&personaUrl=%2Fark%3A%2F61903%2F1%3A1%3AKZT6-V8C

There are some indicators that Johann Georg Leeb died shortly before 2/27/1823, published in a passing memorial. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 hours ago, Hempel said:

Lütgendoff asserts there are two Johann Georg Leebs who were instrument makers.  There is only one if you take both of his entries into account, considering the evidence from primary sources.

 

 

40 minutes ago, Hempel said:

 

This published remark would indicate that Johann Georg Leeb had a son Georg (b. 5/5/1991) that carried on the business after his death, and that the younger Georg was still alive in 1823, past the 3/3/1817 date specified by Lütgendorff. 

 

So Lütgendorff was right that there were two Johann Georg (Pressburg) after all?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

24 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

 

So Lütgendorff was right that there were two Johann Georg (Pressburg) after all?

There is Johann Georg Leeb (b. around 1759, cognomen "Georg") and his son Georg (baptismal name, not "Johann Georg") who carried on the Preßburg business after JGL died.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

Of the later Pressburg makers I mentioned, I have a Joseph Hamberger violin somewhere, which I could illustrate if anybody would like, although I will have to look for it first

 

Yes please :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There's some evidence the Preßburger Geigenmacher Georg died in Vienna, age 38 (Wiener Zeitung, 3/7/1829):

GeorgLeebd.png.956941b12d00d3dd23bbb9fdf79062d8.png

(entry is 3/3/1829)

I've verified though the death register at St. Josef ob der Laimgrube that the Preßburger Geigenmacher Georg Leeb died in Vienna. 

Georg_Leeb_d2.thumb.png.d4a8c3bdd90e16165faaa09e94e4956f.png

A bit curious this putative "Viennese" Georg (was son of Andreas Karl or Johann Georg??) wasn't mentioned in the Ö Musiklexikon. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Hempel said:

Published in the Preßburger Zeitung 7/7/1823:

georg_leeb_2.png.a7f847ba869f4b24ea0b6ee4f5f41082.png

 

At the risk of going a little off-topic, one wonders if the “Bogen-Guitarre” Georg Leeb spoke of in his “Bemerkung” wasn’t the Arpegione, and this an aspect of a dispute with Staufer?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

49 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

At the risk of going a little off-topic, one wonders if the “Bogen-Guitarre” Georg Leeb spoke of in his “Bemerkung” wasn’t the Arpegione, and this an aspect of a dispute with Staufer?

Peter Teufelsdorfer of Pest was involved in a (1823?) dispute with Staufer over the arpeggione. 

Bit strange that Georg Leeb would insert himself into this dispute, and assert "prior art," saying his father created this over 20 years earlier. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are published sources (books) that claim Joseph Hamberger took over Georg Leeb's shop after his death.  I will point out Georg Leeb was sufficient ill enough to at least attempt to have a "fire sale" of his shop contents, 11 months prior to his death.

Published in 4/4/1828 (and a few subsequent) issue of Preßburger Zeitung

gleebsale.png.59899f43d31078f5ac163e6cfb3ecc0a.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Having spent a lot of time reading up (much nonsense) about Johann Georg Leeb, one has to establish that one only really knows that he was born about 1759, and had a son, Georg, whose work I have yet to see, who attempted to sell off the property of the shop in 1828. Hempel sent me a newspaper cutting from 1794, where Leeb donated 8 Gulden to the war effort (adversary back then was Napoleon), so business seems to have been going well enough to waste money on things like that. George (the son) died in Vienna in 1829, although I am not certain when or where Johann Georg passed away.

 

Since the chattels of the business were advertised for sale in the newspaper of 1828, the traditional form of taking over a shop (marry the widow/daughter) seem not to have happened, although Kresák (a Slovakian musicologist) names the successor from 1826 as the Viennese Joseph Hamberger. One should understand any such “succession” not as a taking over the shop, or marrying into the family, but the new man opening in the same city simultaneously to the old business finishing. According to Kresák, Hamberger was a pupil of Schweizer and Teufelsdorfer in Budapest (which makes the dispute about the Arpeggione interesting). Hamberger became a citizen of Pressburg in 1830. The illustrated violin is from 1836

 

It should perhaps be mentioned, that collecting 19th C. Viennese instruments can be difficult, since many of these makers didn’t make very many violins. In the 19th C there was a boom in the playing of the violin in the middle class, (one notes when and where all the string quartets were written!) and the Viennese makers were busy on the one hand selling antique violins, but also selling an immense amount of cheaper instruments from (i.e.) Schönbach. Lemböck, whose bookkeeping still lies in a dusty corner of the Musikverein had an immense amount of business with the Schönbach firm Placht, for instance. This all makes it difficult to reliably authenticate instruments by these Viennese makers, for lack of reference examples. In the case of the 1836 violin though I am certain of the attribution, since a Viennese colleague has the carbon copy as a viola (just viola sized and a little more yellow).

 

Hamberger had two sons. Ferdinand who succeeded him, continuing the business in Pressburg until 1891, and Joseph II, who moved to Vienna and worked for Anton Hofmann in the Habsburgergasse No 8. where in 1873 he became the successor to Hofmann and became “Hofgeigenmacher”. His successor was Alfred Coletti. To my knowledge there is no “primary” evidence that Hamberger was a Wiener, although all claim he was. One should perhaps note that the family Lütgendorff lived in Pressburg in the period 1824 until 1840, and although our Lütgendorff was only born in 1856, one might suppose a certain “local knowledge”. Our Lütgendorff would certainly have known Joseph II Hamberger in die Habsburgergasse in Vienna personally.

 

The violin has an early 19th C Vieneese feeling to it. Some things had changed to the 18th C tradition, The high 18th C ribs had given way to much lower ones being 29mm all around. There is no longer a parchment strip on the back joint. The linings are walnut, let into the right angle triangle pine blocks with a point. The scroll fluting stops about 4 or 5 mm short of “the bitter end”. The belly is of one piece. When I got the violin, 3 ribs were mostly worm excrement and epoxy glue, and after much thought I made 3 new ribs for it.

1133819141_HambergerDecke.jpg

506193834_HambergerBoden.jpg

Hamberger Schneckenprofil.jpg

Hamberger Schneckenrücken.jpg

Hamberger Schnecke vorne.jpg

Hamberger Zettel.jpg

Hamberger treble ribs.jpg

Hamberger bass ribs.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/31/2022 at 5:26 PM, jacobsaunders said:

The linings are walnut, let into the right angle triangle pine blocks with a point. The scroll fluting stops about 4 or 5 mm short of “the bitter end”

Thank you very much for this rare reference example and all the additional informations!

Two things make me wonder: Right angle triangle blocks, do you mean symmetrically shaped, in opposite to being longer in the outer bouts? And could the scroll, if not being fully fluted, be bought in from the Schönbach trade, maybe through the  Placht shop?

I'm also wondering which of the ribs are original and which replaced.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, Blank face said:

Thank you very much for this rare reference example and all the additional informations!

Two things make me wonder: Right angle triangle blocks, do you mean symmetrically shaped, in opposite to being longer in the outer bouts? And could the scroll, if not being fully fluted, be bought in from the Schönbach trade, maybe through the  Placht shop?

I'm also wondering which of the ribs are original and which replaced.

I meant with a plan view like a right angled triangle (like Mittenwald for instance). I personally very much doubt that the scroll is bought in, from Placht or anyone else. I made point of posting pictures of the ribs from both sides, so that you can work out which one is which for yourself:)

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...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.


×
×
  • Create New...