Jump to content

E.H. Roth violins gradations


yaumnik
 Share

Recommended Posts

There's no serial #. Wilhelm Roth confirmed it's a 1925 XI-R/72. I don't have any reason to doubt the attribution :-).  I'm trying to discern how made for Europe XIR grade compares to the US grades. 

P.S. This violin has very strong bright sound, loads of projection. I am planning to fit it with a harp style tailpiece and put "warmer" strings like Warchal Amber set.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

56 minutes ago, yaumnik said:

There's no serial #. Wilhelm Roth confirmed it's a 1925 XI-R/72. I don't have any reason to doubt the attribution :-).  I'm trying to discern how made for Europe XIR grade compares to the US grades. 

 

There is no "made for Europe X1R grade". This is a grading system invented for the American market, and which is being applied post hoc by the Roth firm to violins which didn't have that model designation when they were made. They might just as well tell you it's an R2D2.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, yaumnik said:

There's no serial #.

If there is no serial number it is only reasonable to take it as having no serial number and judge it on it‘s own merits, as it applies to the vaste majority of all violins.
Life can be so difficult often.B)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, martin swan said:

This is a grading system invented for the American market, and which is being applied post hoc by the Roth firm to violins which didn't have that model designation when they were made. They might just as well tell you it's an R2D2.

The Roth system of maker's names and years used to assign model names was in existence in 1924 as seen in the catalog published that year, so this violin could very well have had that model designation when it was made.

The OP's violin looks like a Roth model XI-R (Reproduction of Guarneri 1736), and the date and label look authentic. I have also seen other Roth violins from the 20's and 30's that don't have serial numbers (also 1952's). 

Whether it was ultimately exported to the US or not, it seems reasonable that it was originally made in the workshop as a Roth Model XI-R, and I think Wilhelm Roth can justifiably describe it as such.

What I find confusing is that style of label versus the more common style we see see in the US: 

roth_label.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, GeorgeH said:

The Roth system of maker's names and years used to assign model names was in existence in 1924 as seen in the catalog published that year, so this violin could very well have had that model designation when it was made.

The OP's violin looks like a Roth model XI-R (Reproduction of Guarneri 1736), and the date and label look authentic. I have also seen other Roth violins from the 20's and 30's that don't have serial numbers (also 1952's). 

Whether it was ultimately exported to the US or not, it seems reasonable that it was originally made in the workshop as a Roth Model XI-R, and I think Wilhelm Roth can justifiably describe it as such.

What I find confusing is that style of label versus the more common style we see see in the US: 

roth_label.jpg

Since it actually is from the 20s it's probably one of those you've seen without a serial number.  As for the label,  I wouldn't be surprised if the original label was "harvested" and the later replacement label was put in at some point afterword.  As @martin swan mentioned, the label is from the WWII timeframe, which would make a date in the 1920s a bit off, unless the person who put the replacement label in knew the probable date of the fiddle from the model and added it.     

I have MA Juzek that "lost" its original label at some point and had a fake Rinaldi label in it when I bought it.  Of course a MA Juzek is identifiable a mile away so it doesn't matter what label it has, but maybe we'll put a nice facsimile label in it some day just for future owners' reference.  It's possible this is what happened with the OP's Roth.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, GeorgeH said:

...What I find confusing is that style of label versus the more common style we see see in the US...

I have seen a few Roths with "that style of label," and I remember hearing that it was used before "the more common style," but I don't remember when the change from the earlier style was made.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Brad Dorsey said:

I have seen a few Roths with "that style of label," and I remember hearing that it was used before "the more common style," but I don't remember when the change from the earlier style was made.

Ditto.

The OP label was the one used very early and before serial numbers were introduced. If you have a look through the Cozio archive, you'll see a 1924 Guarnerius with the same label and w/o serial number. The first violin with a serial number in the Cozio archive dates to 1925; the OP violin may have been the last one without serial number.

P.S.: The 1924 example in the Cozio archive with the later label and serial number is a mistake - it's a 1927.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

EH Roths are always so problematic - there seem to be fundamental differences between what we see in Europe and what you see in the US. And then we are told in strident capitals by HEMPEL that no Roths were ever sold new in Europe .... what to think?

I can see that there are several pre-1925 examples in the Cozio example with this "neo-gothic" label and no serial number so I accept that point, although I've only ever seen it in a 1939 Roth.

What puzzles me looking at the Cozio archive is that everything from 1925 onwards has the "italic" label and a serial number. So the OP violin is some kind of outlier ...

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not to add to the confusion, but I have a roughly 1913 (per Wilhelm Roth) Carl of Wilton Amati model graded as an XV-R. Not to mention the Eugen Meinels, so branded as to avoid head-to head competition among retailers and marked 1725 Strad, plus Oskar Meinels, very nice violins in their own right. All for the US market.

The only thing that surprises me about Roth is that their records are as complete and consistent as they are, compared with the other music companies I've had occasion to research.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recall going to the German violins exhibit at the VSA convention a while back, where there were quite a few Roths on display. I saw both styles of labels in the violins, although I dont remember how they were dated.

As Roth values have jumped up lately, the incentive to falsify labels and brands has also increased, and more and more spurious examples are showing up. That’s not to say that the violin posted here is wrong, just that there are a lot of fishy violins with Roth labels. The record archives are a double edged sword—on the one hand they make identification easier, on the other, they provide more information to anyone who wants to make a more convincing fake. I’ve seen enough real Roths that have been backdated and altered to look older to be suspicious whenever even one detail is missing. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/23/2022 at 10:24 AM, yaumnik said:

OK, so for the sake of trying to get somewhere in this discussion :D I'll share the photos I just made.  Also, Mr. Wilhelm Roth let me know that from the archives, it is a Roth and it's a XI-R/72. However, talking to local experts, the label font/appearance + lack of serial number on the stamp + comparison to local XR available violins, the local experts said that this violin was made for the European market, not US. And supposedly, there was a different gradation system/scale for Europe than US market. US market scale was IR for the lowest grade and XIR (aka special commisions) for the top grade.

So, can anyone share the info on the European gradation?

20220723_125400.jpg

20220723_125645.jpg

I don't know where you are or which "experts" you consulted.

You need to ask yourself if EHRs did indeed sell in the European market, why the label would bear "GERMANY" stamped in English.  In the worldwide context, this could only mean the product is aimed at English-speaking countries (UK, US, Canada, Australia, perhaps some countries in Africa.)

If as your "expert" contends, your fiddle specifically was aimed for the European market, you should ask your expert to provide some documentary evidence that there were EHR agents and advertising material published in/for the UK.  That's how you'd find out that perhaps your "expert" might not be so expert at all.

These days cell phone manufacturers make the same model phones but give them different names depending on which carriers sell them.   Back in 1925 (and earlier) they used the same concept.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/23/2022 at 10:24 AM, yaumnik said:

OK, so for the sake of trying to get somewhere in this discussion :D I'll share the photos I just made.  Also, Mr. Wilhelm Roth let me know that from the archives, it is a Roth and it's a XI-R/72. However, talking to local experts, the label font/appearance + lack of serial number on the stamp + comparison to local XR available violins, the local experts said that this violin was made for the European market, not US. And supposedly, there was a different gradation system/scale for Europe than US market. US market scale was IR for the lowest grade and XIR (aka special commisions) for the top grade.

So, can anyone share the info on the European gradation?

20220723_125400.jpg

20220723_125645.jpg

 

The EHR serials/grading system commenced only after EHR II joined Simson (late 1925 IIRC).  Prior to that EHRII was with Selmer, and (some) EHR instruments were sold by Selmer without labels or markings of any kind.  EHR instruments were advertised for sale by other music dealers like Carl Fisher and even Wurlitzer.

The marking attributes of the violin violin you posted are entirely consistent with EHR fiddles made before EHR II joined Simson.  Label design also changed after EHR II joined Simson.

EHR firm historical record has been covered ad nausem on this forum.  Separate the speculation (even on this thread) from the historical record and it should be very clear.  It gets really tiresome when even people in the trade raise spurious alarms like "no serial number!?" and "made for the European market."  Freaking pathetic. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Hempel said:

The EHR serials/grading system commenced only after EHR II joined Simson (late 1925 IIRC).  Prior to that EHRII was with Selmer, and EHR instruments were sold by Selmer without labels or markings of any kind.  EHR instruments were advertised for sale by other music dealers like Carl Fisher and even Wurlitzer.

The marking attributes of the violin violin you posted are entirely consistent with EHR fiddles made before EHR II joined Simson.  Label design also changed after EHR II joined Simson.

EHR firm historical record has been covered ad nausem on this forum.  Separate the speculation (even on this thread) from the historical record and it should be very clear.  It gets really tiresome when even people in the trade raise spurious alarms like "no serial number!?" and "made for the European market."  Freaking pathetic. 

Thank you for the informative confirmation. I recently held a couple of late 1920s Roth XR violins and I must say that their appearance was that of much heavier "antiquing" than mine which is light to moderate which I frankly prefer. I'm wondering about such significant shift in just a year or two in terms of visual appearance/finishing for these violins ... unless my fiddle was part of a commission that specifed "light antique" finishing.  Any thoughts on this?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Hempel said:

The EHR serials/grading system commenced only after EHR II joined Simson (late 1925 IIRC).  Prior to that EHRII was with Selmer, and EHR instruments were sold by Selmer without labels or markings of any kind.  EHR instruments were advertised for sale by other music dealers like Carl Fisher and even Wurlitzer.

The marking attributes of the violin violin you posted are entirely consistent with EHR fiddles made before EHR II joined Simson.  Label design also changed after EHR II joined Simson.

EHR firm historical record has been covered ad nausem on this forum.  Separate the speculation (even on this thread) from the historical record and it should be very clear.  It gets really tiresome when even people in the trade raise spurious alarms like "no serial number!?" and "made for the European market."  Freaking pathetic. 

All very useful information thanks but what purpose is served by barking at people? It just makes enemies ...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

25 minutes ago, yaumnik said:

Thank you for the informative confirmation. I recently held a couple of late 1920s Roth XR violins and I must say that their appearance was that of much heavier "antiquing" than mine which is light to moderate which I frankly prefer. I'm wondering about such significant shift in just a year or two in terms of visual appearance/finishing for these violins ... unless my fiddle was part of a commission that specifed "light antique" finishing.  Any thoughts on this?

The cheaper models generally used little or no antiquing, the top models more heavy antiquing, that is my understanding

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...