Claude Thomassin was a very talented and highy individual maker. Here we have a nickel mounted example in near mint condition with a typically refined and luminous sound.

The two features which distinguish Thomassin’s bows are the rather slender upright head and the rounded ferrule. However, this second feature is more associated with his later work, and in this bow the ferrule is quite conventional. The overall style is very close to that of FN Voirin, whose influence pervaded the Gand & Bernardel shop where Thomassin worked until 1901.

The stick is of round section orange brown pernambuco, lightly flamed and quite flecked – typical Thomassin wood. Mounts are nickel and ebony.

The condition is remarkable, with only a few minor nibbles to the finish of the stick.

In terms of playability, this bow is very much what we expect from Thomassin, graceful, refined, very classy. The tone is pure and airy, the stick is just the right side of nervy, and the overall feel is sprightly and eager.

Very comparable to Voirin, this is the sort of bow that’s unbeatable for classical and baroque repertoire – the legato stroke is full of nuance, the staccato is pin-sharp, the response to the slightest adjustment is immediate.

Though the stick is first class, the mounts on this bow are nickel – the happy result is a classic Thomassin at an affordable price.

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