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Charles Collin-Mezin pere violin


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I bought this violin for a pittance promising the seller a substantial sum if I can sell it for half of what its probably worth, it came with a recital brochure of the grandfather presumably playing this in 1916, certainly the label is the type used at or before 1916 the address is Possionaire??? 10 the son's label say grand exposition Paris or something after 1923 when Pere died, its in good condition no cracks, a glued centre seam under the tailpice, a lot of what looks like natural wear, may have originally not been antiqued, fingerboard had a lot of wear, the pegs were hopelessly oval and new ebony pegs were fit, though someone may wish to spiral bush the pegholes and fit smaller diametre pegs, it has a really great sound, loud, even except the G string is a little louder, the fingerboard not the neck is set a little crooked as the the part hanging out over the violin body has less wood on the bass side, I fit an off center bridge to centre the strings and bridge, however someone may wish to fit a new fingerboard and correct the discrepancy, one of the most valuable violins to come into my shop

Marting Swan and blank face, in the light of lesser and greater Collin Mezins being made at the same time do you think this is lesser model or top model or middle, thank you very much

Oh and it does have the signature on the wood of the back on the right side

 

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I have seen. many CMs and have a few. The better CM père instruments are very consistent in the type of maple chosen for the back (two types), maybe all made from the same tree trunk. One of the two could match the wood on yours. The scroll is always extremely accurate and symmetrical. Yours seems to be a Guarneri model which are the most sought after.

There is always a signature inside, a number next to the label, which is easy to identify. Blocks are very square shaped and linings very high.

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On 1/21/2024 at 7:11 PM, Strad O Various Jr. said:

Marting Swan and blank face, in the light of lesser and greater Collin Mezins being made at the same time do you think this is lesser model or top model or middle, thank you very much

Unfortunately Colin Mezin aren't within my experience, but you've received good advice. Surely it isn't a Guarneri model, but more a sort of Messiah copy or the like.

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4 hours ago, martin swan said:

At first glance the violin looks credible, though I wouldn't be sure it was pre 1900 - is the label not dated?

They are also numbered, at least until the fils took over. I find even some of the son's pretty good even though it is not the same excellent workmanship.

 

1 hour ago, Blank face said:

Unfortunately Colin Mezin aren't within my experience, but you've received good advice. Surely it isn't a Guarneri model, but more a sort of Messiah copy or the like.

 

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25 minutes ago, uguntde said:

They are also numbered, at least until the fils took over. I find even some of the son's pretty good even though it is not the same excellent workmanship.

 

 

I find it tedious when people talk of violins “by the father” as opposed to those “by the son”. One should realise/acknowledge that Collin-Mezin was a large violin factory, and it wouldn’t have made a fat lot of difference who was sitting in the head office Collin-Mézin, 1912 catalogue. (luthiers-mirecourt.com)

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36 minutes ago, jacobsaunders said:

I find it tedious when people talk of violins “by the father” as opposed to those “by the son”. One should realise/acknowledge that Collin-Mezin was a large violin factory, and it wouldn’t have made a fat lot of difference who was sitting in the head office Collin-Mézin, 1912 catalogue. (luthiers-mirecourt.com)

At its height there were 8 people in the shop, but up until 1900 only Ch. JB and one or two apprentices.

Stylistically there's a huge change and a consistent drop in quality (materials, model, workmanship, varnish) between the early 1870s and the 1930s.

My apologies for being tedious!

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9 minutes ago, martin swan said:

At its height there were 8 people in the shop, but up until 1900 only Ch. JB and one or two apprentices.

Stylistically there's a huge change and a consistent drop in quality (materials, model, workmanship, varnish) between the early 1870s and the 1930s.

My apologies for being tedious!

Someone told you that at the pub?

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8 hours ago, Michael Richwine said:

If a person can look at a page full of recent auction results and be swayed by one rank outlier, all I can say is what my Southern Mama would say in this case: "Well bless his heart!" I generally presume a modicum of practical sense when I offer a brief suggestion.

Of course - I thought I was being vaguely funny ...

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Every player I've ever met claims to own the best example by their particular maker (with qualifications for obvious injuries), thus justifying their highest valuation, so it's barely a joke.

"This is the best Smegnetz you're ever going to see, but I got it cheap because of the missing head, three new ribs, and the post crack in the back!"

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17 hours ago, martin swan said:

Not sure that's such a good idea :D

Didn't they have some freak result in a recent Berlin sale for 25k euros ...?

I've seen my share of pre-1900 Collin-Mezins... most when I was with "the firm".  Jacques Francis once told me (in the early '90s):  "I buy them when ever I can.  If you correct the setup and hang them on the line, they simply sell themselves." Affordable prices and consistency...

Collin-Mezin instruments were certainly not ALL created equal, but the majority per any period are definitely very consistent.  The outliers are not all that plentiful but much more impressive. I've handled the sale of a very nice, relatively early, "antiqued" (very unusual) Guarneri model twice (I believe I've mentioned it here in the past) that I purchased from Peter Biddulph long ago.. and would be more than happy to do it again... and there's a 'cello or two I sold that I quite liked (cellos from the shop were quite popular in Paris at the time). I would value those instruments a little differently than the run-of-the-mill productions.

Jacob is correct... They are workshop instruments, but as Martin mentioned, the general quality of build and varnish changed for the worse as time passed... and as the firm moved to Mirecourt and increased production and (I assume) contracted instruments from other sources there.  The 20th century introduction of the Le Victorieux model (which I think resembles a coffee table as much as it resembles an instrument) was not a high point.

I won't get into the confusion about the C-M pere and fils thing here as I  think that was covered on another thread.

Without confirming the interior markings of Strad-Os fiddle, I will say it looks credible and appears to be a representative example.  Besides any other repair required, and if if it hasn't already been done, resetting the neck to a more desirable angle and a decent setup would probably yield a very useable violin.

Carry on.

 

 

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27 minutes ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

I've seen my share of pre-1900 Collin-Mezins... most when I was with "the firm".  Jacques Francis once told me (in the early '90s):  "I buy them when ever I can.  If you correct the setup and hang them on the line, they simply sell themselves." Affordable prices and consistency...

Collin-Mezin instruments were certainly not ALL created equal, but the majority per any period are definitely very consistent.  The outliers are not all that plentiful but much more impressive. I've handled the sale of a very nice, relatively early, "antiqued" (very unusual) Guarneri model twice (I believe I've mentioned it here in the past) that I purchased from Peter Biddulph long ago.. and would be more than happy to do it again... and there's a 'cello or two I sold that I quite liked (cellos from the shop were quite popular in Paris at the time). I would value those instruments a little differently than the run-of-the-mill productions.

Jacob is correct... They are workshop instruments, but as Martin mentioned, the general quality of build and varnish changed for the worse as time passed... and as the firm moved to Mirecourt and increased production and (I assume) contacted instruments from other sources there.  The 20th century introduction of the Le Victorieux model (which I think resembles a coffee table as much as it resembles an instrument) was not a high point.

I won't get into the confusion about the C-M pere and fils thing here as I  think that was covered on another thread.

Without confirming the interior markings of Strad-Os fiddle, I will say it looks credible and appears to be a representative example.  Besides any other repair required, and if if it hasn't already been done, resetting the neck to a more desirable angle and a decent setup would probably yield a very useable violin.

Carry on.

 

 

So you don’t think all those fiddles were make by one bloke and an apprentice either?:)

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