Viola Bows

Selected contemporary and antique viola bows chosen for all-round playing ability and tone.

New Viola Bows by A. Reis

One in stock at present

£850

New Viola Bows by A. Reis
These new viola bows are made from excellent Brazilian pernambuco, assembled and finished by Alecio Luiz Dos Reis, a young Brazilian maker living in the UK. They represent exceptional value for money. More details


Alfred Knoll Viola Bow, circa 1970

£2,500

Alfred Knoll Viola Bow, circa 1970This is an excellent gold-mounted bow by Alfred Knoll – according to Hartmut Knoll it dates from the late 1960s or early 1970s, although it looks brand new. It’s a very attractive bow of octagonal section red pernambuco, and it plays like a dream, not too stiff, not too slappy – silky would be the best word to describe the action and the sound. I would recommend it for an aspiring soloist – it’s clean, lively and very responsive. And it’s in perfect condition. More details


Roger François Lotte Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1970

£3,000

Roger François Lotte Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1970This is a lovely bow by Roger Lotte carrying his own later brand. It’s a classic example of his work with a rounded heel, Parisian eye, and a Simon-like backwards curve to the head. The fine red pernambuco is also typical – round in section, with mounts of silver and ebony. The condition is excellent.
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WE Hill & Sons Viola Bow, London circa 1930 (Albert Leeson)

£4,500

WE Hill &  Sons Viola Bow, London circa 1930 (Albert Leeson)This is a very nice example of the general output of the Hill shop between the wars. Branded simply “Hill”, and a bit more economical on the mounts than the pricier models, it’s nonetheless a very good playing stick. Albert Leeson joined the Hill shop in the 1920s and quickly showed enough talent to be allowed to work on his own – his bows are identified by a number 3 on the silver face plate. More details


Morizot Frères Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1940

£5,500

Morizot Frères Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1940
The Morizot workshop in Mirecourt was formed in 1937 by the sons of Louis Morizot. It was a busy place full of talented and competitive people, and the quantity and quality of bows produced is staggering. This particular bow is a very fine example in perfect condition, made for Collin-Mézin, and with an ornamental “R” engraved on the ferrule. The stick is of octagonal section red-brown pernambuco of high quality, mounts are silver and ebony. More details


Albert Nürnberger Viola Bow, Markneukirchen circa 1920

£6,500

Albert Nürnberger Viola Bow, Markneukirchen circa 1920This is a very fine Nürnberger family viola bow, probably an early work by Carl Albert Nürnberger. The brand with a * at each end came into use after 1910, yet some archaic aspects of this bow’s construction suggest that it can’t be much later than that. The bow has a silver face and a pinned underslide, and it oozes style. The stick is of beautifully flecked round section pernambuco – mounts are silver and ebony.
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Claude Thomassin Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1915 (John & Arthur Beare Stamp)

£13,500

Claude Thomassin Viola Bow, Mirecourt circa 1915Claude Thomassin worked for Gand & Bernardel before setting up on his own , first in Paris then from 1904 in Mirecourt. He was a highly respected and very successful maker who supplied bows to numerous shops and instrument-makers. J&A Beare in London bought bows from Thomassin, as did Withers and many others. His bows are very distinctive, mainly on account of the heavily swept back ferrule and rounded frog – the work is of high quality and the bows generally play very well. More details


François Nicolas Voirin Viola Bow, Paris circa 1880

François Nicolas Voirin Viola Bow, Paris circa 1880FN Voirin is one of the greatest names in bow-making. Although his bows haven’t become a currency in the way that Sartory bows have, he is generally regarded as the better maker. While his bows are inevitably lighter, they have unparalleled elegance and are renowned for their quality of sound.

This viola bow is a lovely example of his work, typically refined and perfectly proportioned. The stick is of octagonal section orange-brown pernambuco with speckled figure, mounts are silver and ebony. The condition is astounding.
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Eugène Sartory Viola Bow, Paris circa 1935

Eugène Sartory Viola Bow, Paris circa 1935This is a superb Sartory viola bow in near pristine condition, stamped E SARTORY A PARIS, and certified by Pierre Guillaume. Sartory bows represent a kind of gold standard for professional players – utterly reliable, with the brilliance of the greatest of French makers, but with a weight and balance that works for modern technique.

The stick is of round section red brown pernambuco with silver and ebony mounts. The condition is superb – there are no issues to report aside from a minor repaired pin crack to the stick at the adjuster. More details


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