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Hi folks,

Just got this old one in the shop, it'll probably become just a curiosity, a wall-hanger!  But it sure would be fun to decipher the old label, and see if it makes any sense to anyone.  I'm seeing 1737 on the oldest labellabels.thumb.jpg.db7648f61e87966ee8d9436472747aa8.jpg.  There are 3 repair labels, and one English inked message that reads "This violin was made by XXX Prague", but can't make out the name they attribute it to.

What purfling is left is painted on.  The neck root has been extended to lengthen the neck to 130mm.  LOB 361.  Fun ff-holes!  

Thanks, enjoy.

slab back.jpg

neck root.jpg






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The inscription at the wood refers to J(oanes) U(dalricus) Eberle in Prague, who surely wasn’t the maker; the old paper looks more reliable, but actually I can guess only that it starts with “Theod. Joh.”, who might have been a peasant autodidact. The carved head is impressive, I would see a certain resemblance to the Polish/Groblic school; but this can be just randomly.

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This thing has more labels than a steamer trunk. 

Repairs in 1905 and 1913?  The towns listed are close together, so at least there's that.  Were these two prolific makers or import tweakers?

What was the outcome of the work around the neck root?


I do like the head carving, nice an stout, strong functional furniture or tool decoration.

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31 minutes ago, Guido said:

The 1737 label seems a good lead

No matter how the year reads, I would rather date both this label and the instrument in the 19th century.

The 2nd line starting with “in” gives a place, I first thought of Greifswald, but that doesn’t seem to be right.

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The intent of the work around the neck root seems to be to achieve modern neck length without doing a scroll graft.  

Beyond the label and the head, there's the other features of the instrument that I find pretty quaint, like the outline and the ff's.  Surely someone has seen similar ff holes, but I've never run across anything quite like them before.

Perhaps it will remain a puzzle...

Somewhere I have an old violin body with similar 'varnish', I should dig it out for comparison.

ff holes.jpg

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Just a detail, but I notice that the bottom block seems to have been cut “on the slab”, i.e. with l horizontal annual rings rather than the usual standing up ones. One sees this quite often on violins of the Salzkammergut, although I have one Saxon violin in the front room like that too. For other reasons (the outline for instance) I don’t expect it is from Salzkammergut though.

I’m afraid I can’t read the label either

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