FX Tourte is without question the greatest name in the history of bow-making. Here we have a superb example from around 1800, original in all parts and in excellent condition. It’s a tremendous player worthy of a leading soloist.

FX Tourte is not only lauded as the creator of the modern bow – he also had some special genius, and like Stradivari his work has never been bettered, either in the opinion of musicians or of later makers. Many of his bows are still in use today on the professional stage, and there is a quality to his sticks which can only really be explained by saying “it’s a Tourte”.

This bow was made around 1795-1800. The round stick is of exceptionally dark pernambuco – strong light reveals a remarkable figure and a kind of irridescensce so typical of Tourte wood.

The condition is excellent – there’s some minor wear to the upper facet of the handle but otherwise the stick is beautifully preserved. The copy frog has a bit of wood missing to the top front corner on the player’s side – the original frog has a very discreet repaired crack in the lower throat leading back from the ferrule.

The copy frog and button are very faithful to the originals.

Of course not all Tourte bows are outstanding – some are too supple for modern repertoire – but a great Tourte will turn your head.

This particular bow has all the qualities you would hope to find in a Tourte. The stick is strong yet supple in the right places. The articulation is remarkable, and the first thing that you notice is how it clears up all the detail in the music – it’s a bit like using a sharpness filter in Photoshop.

Secondly, the sound is just so good – satisfyingly fat but with a kind of airy transparency that more modern bows never manage to achieve, and which is essential if a soloist is to realise their musical concept in a big hall.

Anyway, if you’re in the market for a great Tourte you surely don’t need me to sing its praise… you need to try it for yourself.

Contact us

We offer a personal service to all our customers, and are happy to chat on the phone or by email.

We have violin dealer insurance for sending instruments internationally and all purchases from the website are covered by a 14 day return policy.

Subscribe to our mailing list

We never pass information to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any time.