French Violin Bows

Our current selection of fine French violin bows.

Pillot Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1920

£1,350

Pillot Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1920
This is a relatively modest Mirecourt bow stamped Pillot which plays superbly. The stick is of deep red pernambuco, mounts are ebony and nickel. The condition is excellent throughout, with the exception of the ebony collar of the adjuster which has two small cracks. More details


Cuniot-Hury Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1920

£1,700

Cuniot-Hury Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1920This is a very good Cuniot-Hury made by Emile F. Ouchard, who apprenticed with Eugene Cuniot-Hury and then took over the workshop in 1912. The model is characterized by a tall narrow head and a frog with a rounded heel – the plain adjuster of slightly greater diameter than the stick is also typical. The output of this workshop is vary varied in quality, but this is a lovely example, finely worked and with good wood. More details


Jacques Poullot Violin Bow, Dijon 2015

On trial, £2,250

Jacques Poullot Violin Bow,  Dijon 2015This is a new bow by contemporary French maker Jacques Poullot. Like so many of the new wave of French makers, Poullot studied under Bernard Ouchard, but he is a highly respected maker in his own right. The bow we are offering for sale is his ‘Special Atelier’ model with a plain pearl eye, stick of round section red pernambuco, and sliver and ebony mounts. More details


Roger Francois Lotte Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1950 (later mounts)

£2,500

Roger Francois Lotte Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1950This is a classic Mirecourt bow made by Roger Francois Lotte, branded Georges Coné & Fils Lyon. Lotte supplied a lot of unbranded bows like this to French violin-makers such as Coné. The mounts are not typical of Lotte – although they are a perfect fit and of fine quality, it seems wise to assume they aren’t original. The stick is of round section red pernambuco – the wire lapping appears original and everything is in excellent condition. More details


Cousenon Bernardel Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1930

£2,750

Cousenon Bernardel Violin Bow,  Mirecourt circa 1930
This is a very good silver-mounted Mirecourt bow stamped Leon Bernardel Paris. This brand was owned by the Cousenon firm, but most likely the bow was supplied by the Laberte workshops. Typical French features include the cuts to the corners of the ferrule and the visible transition from octagonal to round section beyond the end of the lapping. More details


Bernard Ouchard Violin Bow, Geneva circa 1960

£7,000

Bernard Ouchard Violin BowYou can recognize a Bernard Ouchard bow from a mile away – highly distinctive styling, beautiful workmanship, and always a touch of bling. Aside from being a very pretty object, this bow is an outstanding player which ticks all the boxes, and does great credit to its maker and to the illustrious Ouchard name. More details


Emile François Ouchard Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1930

£8,000

Emile François Ouchard Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1930This is one of two superb bows we have by this fine French maker. Ouchard apprenticed to Eugène Cuniot, and ended up running the firm of Cuniot-Hury after Cuniot’s death in 1910. From 1923 onwards, Ouchard worked under his own name along with his son Emile Auguste.

This is a very typical example of Ouchard’s work, with a rounded heel, finely tapered pearl slide, and his most classical head. The wood is beautifully flamed orange-brown pernaumbuco, round section, mounts are silver and ebony. The condition is excellent. More details


Auguste Barbé Violin Bow for Gand & Bernardel, Paris circa 1890

On trial, £8,000

Auguste Barbé Violin Bow for Gand & Bernardel, Paris circa 1890Auguste Barbé is a highly respected maker who worked exclusively for Gand & Bernardel, and whose bows are regarded as equal to those of FN Voirin. Gand & Bernardel employed some of the great names in French bow-making (Joseph Henry and Pierre Simon perhaps the most famous), and their output was of the highest quality. This bow is typical of their later period, branded simply Gand & Bernardel rather than Gand & Bernardel Fres indicating a post-1885 date. The stick is of excellent orange-brown pernambuco, the frog is ebony with silver mounts. The head is exquisitely worked and vey artistic. More details


Emile François Ouchard Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1925

Recently sold, £8,500

Emile François Ouchard Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1925The second of two superb bows we have by this fine French maker, this is a unique and collectable bow. Ouchard apprenticed to Eugène Cuniot, and ended up running the firm of Cuniot-Hury after Cuniot’s death in 1910. From 1923 onwards, Ouchard worked under his own name along with his son Emile Auguste.

This is a very interesting and stylish bow with a Vuillaume-style trench frog – Pierre Guillaume considers it an unusually fine example of Ouchard’s work. The wood is dark brown round section pernaumbuco of high quality, mounts are silver and ebony. The bow is in excellent condition. More details


JA Vigneron (Père) Violin Bow, Paris circa 1890

£10,000

Vigneron Pere violin bowLike so many of the better late 19th century makers, Joseph-Arthur Vigneron worked for Gand & Bernardel before setting up on his own. His bows are distinctive stylistically and in playing character, sometimes works of genius, sometimes a bit lumpy. This particular bow is one of the best playing bows I have come across!

The stick is of round section mid brown pernambuco with a strong flame, mounts are silver and ebony. In this case we have a plain pearl eye and a square heel, suggesting quite an early date. More details


Victor Fétique Violin Bow, Paris circa 1920

£13,500

Victor Fétique Violin Bow, Paris circa 1920Victor Fétique was an extremely productive maker – the first half of his working life was spent in the employ of CN Bazin and Caressa & Francais, subsequently he ran a busy workshop in his own name, and in 1925 received the honour of “Premier Archetier de France”. Fétique stamped bows are a bit of a nightmare, since his workshop bought in and finished some sticks from Markenukirchen, and the German makers in turn faked his brand. Fétique also made a large number of unbranded bows for other dealers or violin-makers. The only way through this morass is to entrust the identification to an expert, and in this case JF Raffin has confirmed that the bow is entirely the work of Victor Fétique, though sold by and branded Paul Jombar Paris. More details


EA Ouchard Violin Bow, Mirecourt circa 1935

£15,000

EA Ouchard Violin BowEmile Auguste Ouchard is just one of those names …! Everyone who has been around bows will look lively if you show them an EA Ouchard. His work is supremely neat, and the playability of his bows is second to none – while Sartory has the sexier name, EA Ouchard consistently produced better bows. More details


Joseph Alfred Lamy (Père) Violin Bow, Paris circa 1895

£18,000

Joseph Alfred Lamy (Père) Violin Bow, Paris circa 1895This is a very fine Joseph Alfred Lamy in excellent condition, stamped A Lamy à Paris. Lamy worked for FN Voirin until the latter’s death in 1885, then set up on his own producing bows of superb quality. This bow dates from Lamy’s earlier period – the plain eye set far back in the frog is typical of his work at this time. But unlike some bows from this period, this example has a strong stick and a perfect weight. Very much the ideal Lamy, it has a great sound, great technical quality and optimal antique value. More details


Hippolyte Camille Lamy Violin Bow, Paris circa 1910

£21,000

H C Lamy Violin BowThis is a very fine Lamy Fils in near pristine condition, stamped A Lamy A Paris. Lamy bows have always been popular with players, and this particular bow would be pretty hard to beat for sound or for technical quality. The stick is of round section red brown pernambuco, with silver and ebony mounts. The bow is an exceptional piece for a collector, and retains its original tinsel lapping and thumb leather. The condition is pretty much mint – so much so that I have hesitated to even buff up the silver! Yes it’s not cheap, but you will never see another Lamy in this kind of condition. More details


Eugene Sartory Violin Bow, Paris circa 1920

Recently sold

Eugene Sartory Violin BowThis isn’t just any old French bow – it’s a Sartory. It isn’t just any old Sartory, it’s a gold mounted Sartory. It isn’t just any old gold mounted Sartory, it’s a rare Peccatte model gold mounted Sartory. It isn’t just any old rare Peccatte model gold mounted Sartory, it’s the one that used to belong to Jacques Thibaud. More details


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