Jean Persoit is one of the most hallowed names in bow-making, really the only maker to rival FX Tourte. Here we have a restored example that is nonetheless quite beautiful and an outstanding player’s bow.

We are big fans of Persoit, and have recently sold fine bows by this maker to two great soloists. His work is very close to that of FX Tourte, although we’re not aware of the two makers having any professional relationship. However, when it comes to playability his bows are unrivalled, being crucially heavier and on the whole slightly firmer than those of Tourte

This bow came to us as a stick with a head break, but thanks to some exceptional work from Derek Wilson it has been restored to its former glory. The head break is invisible to the naked eye, pinned from the inside. The copy mounts are very credible, and the bow looks stunning.

The stick is of round section dark red pernambuco of outstanding quality with a remarkable figure – the wood to wood mounts in silver and ebony made for the bow, beautifully observed copies with some natural “wear”. Aside from the head repair, there are a couple of repaired handle cracks with an internal bushing – the remainder of the stick is pretty much unmarked.

An “affordable Persoit” is something of an oxymoron, yet that’s what we have here, a bow of the highest calibre which can be had for less than the cost of a Sartory. The bow is an absolute dream to use, producing a huge and opulent sound with almost no effort, offering an enormous dynamic range and an infinite palette of colours. It has none of the drawbacks of some more temperamental wonder bows – it can be brutal but it can also be subtle. Once you’ve tried a bow like this it’s hard to understand why all bows aren’t just as competent, but that’s the reality, and that’s why Persoit has found favour with so many great soloists. Unsurpassed technical qualities and heavenly sound – what more could you ask for?

This is clearly a musician’s bow, not an investment opportunity. However, the repairs are highly professional and guaranteed for 5 years, and there’s simply no other way of finding such a great bow for the price.

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