French Violins

Fine French violins, selected for tone.

A Fine Mirecourt Violin circa 1890

Recently sold

Fine Mirecourt ViolinThis is a lovely Mirecourt violin of some quality, broadly equivalent to a late 19th century Collin-Mézin. It has well conceived arching, finely worked edges and corners, and delicately fluted f-holes. It’s in excellent condition – just two repaired wing cracks to report, otherwise no cracks or repairs. The varnish is oil, very well preserved, with an attractive hint of craquelure. More details


Charles JB Collin-Mézin 7/8 Violin, 1901

On trial, £8,500

7/8 ViolinHere’s a very fine 7/8 Collin-Mézin with a 4/4 sound! It’s in spectacular condition for its age, and it plays beautifully. More details


Alfred Acoulon Violin, Mirecourt circa 1910

£9,000

Alfred Acoulon Violin,Alfred Acoulon was the foremost luthier employed by the Jerome Thibouville Lamy workshops, and he produced their flagship instruments under the soubriquet “Lutherie Parisienne”. Violins sold under his label were made entirely by him – in 1912 an Alfred Acoulon cost 20 times the price of a Geronimo Barnabetti. More details


Nicolas Mathieu Violin, Mirecourt circa 1800

£9,000

Nicolas Mathieu ViolinA fine early Mirecourt violin in mint condition and with an excellent sound More details


Jerome Thibouville-Lamy Violin, Mirecourt 1905

£9,000

Jerome Thibouville-Lamy Violin, Mirecourt 1905Jerome Thibouville-Lamy, or JTL, is one of the best-known names in the violin trade. The JTL mega-workshops in the Vosges produced hundreds of thousands of violins from the late 19th century to the mid 20th century. Mostly these were student violins which have remained popular on account of their excellent sound. But they also produced beautiful handmade “violons de maitre”, most likely the work of Alfred Acoulon More details


Charles JB Collin-Mézin Violin, Paris 1896

£13,500

Charles JB Collin Mezin ViolinCollin-Mézin is one of the best known names in the violin trade. 19th century instruments made by or under the supervision of CH JB Collin-Mézin offer great tone and great workmanship at an affordable price. More details


Paul Bailly Violin, Paris circa 1890

£18,500

Paul Bailly Violin, Paris circa 1890We have four Paul Bailly violins right now – perhaps that’s some indication of how I rate him as a maker. This is the least expensive due to the back length, but it has a fantastic sound. More details


Georges Cunault Violin, Paris 1912

£23,500

Georges Cunault ViolinGeorges Cunault was one of the finest French makers of the early 20th century, but his violins are rarely seen outside France. This is a beautiful del Gesu model from 1912 in excellent condition. More details


Paul Bailly Violin, London 1890

£25,000

Paul Bailly Violin, London 1890Paul Bailly is definitely the most interesting maker to have come out of the Vuillaume shop, and this is the second of three violins of his which we will be offering. Bailly was a tireless experimenter – he also moved house a lot, working in Paris, Brussels, London, New York, Reims, Leeds, and finally Paris again! More details


Paul Blanchard Violin, Lyon 1894

£30,000

Paul Blanchard ViolinPaul Blanchard was an outstanding maker who worked for HC Silvestre before setting up his own workshop in Lyon. The violins he made pre-1900 are vey highly regarded, and the del Gesu models particularly so. This violin is a spectacular example in mint condition, with an outstanding concert sound. More details


Charles Adolphe Maucotel Violin, Paris circa 1850

£32,000

Charles Adolphe Maucotel Violin“A Vuillaume by any other name would smell as sweet …”! Here we have a superb sounding violin by Vuillaume’s right hand man, Charles Adolphe Maucotel. It is in almost all respects indistinguishable from a Vuillame, and it has a superb concert sound. More details


Alberto Blanchi Violin, Nice 1904

£35,000

Alberto Blanchi ViolinBlanchi was perhaps the most refined maker of the Nice school. His ancestry as a violin-maker traces its way back through his father and Pierre Pacherel to Pressenda, and his work represents an excellent synthesis of French precision and Italian flair. More details


Hippolyte Chrétien Silvestre Violin, Paris 1892

£37,500

Hippolyte Chrétien Silvestre ViolinThe Silvestre family are at the heart of French violin-making in the 19th century. Pierre Silvestre worked with Lupot and Gand, and subsequently trained most of the great Lyon makers. Hippolyte worked for Vuillaume before joining his brother in Lyon. Their nephew Hippolyte Chrétien brought all this vast experience together and produced beautiful instruments which are unrivalled both for sound and for quality of workmanship. More details


Joseph Hel Violin, Lille 1889

£38,500

Joseph Hel ViolinThis is a very fine del Gesu copy by one of the most interesting of late 19th century French makers, Joseph Hel. It’s in unusually fine condition with no cracks or damages. More details


Pierre & Hippolyte Silvestre Violin, Lyon 1844

£50,000

Pierre & Hippolyte Silvestre Violin, Lyon 1844The Silvestres were exceptional makers, and their success owes much to their training with Nicolas Lupot and JB Vuillaume. The two brothers worked together from 1829 until 1848, and this violin is a very fine example of their collaborative work. It’s in an exceptional state of preservation, free from repairs or damages, and with very little wear to the original varnish. More details


Pierre Silvestre Violin, Lyon 1852

£55,000

Pierre Silvestre ViolinPierre Silvestre is one of the greatest of French violin makers – he was direct successor to Lupot, and founder of the all-important Lyon school. I have a real soft spot for the Silvestres, but Pierre was the real talent! This violin is a rare Guarneri pattern, it’s in great condition if rather well-loved, and the sound is exceptional. More details


Hippolyte Silvestre Violin, Lyon 1862

£57,500

Hippolyte Silvestre Violin, Lyon 1862Pierre and Hippolyte Silvestre were exceptional makers, and their success owes much to their training with Nicolas Lupot and JB Vuillaume respectively. The two brothers worked together from 1829 until 1848, and then worked independently – Hippolyte survived his brother by 20 years and produced the greater number of instruments, but both makers are accorded equal status within the trade. This Guarneri model violin is a superb example of Hippolyte’s later work, and it’s in great condition. More details


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