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Guiseppe Filius Andrea Guarneri, Ca. 1696-1699




     One of a kind rare violin in good state of preservation bearing a 1698 Andrea Guarneri label. This violin suggests to us the work of Giuseppe Filius Andrea Circa 1696-1699 as it follows the style of "Casa Guarneri." This violin parallels all references made by the Hill Brothers of London regarding the works of Guiseppe "Filius" specially on page 20 of "The Violin Makers of the Guarneri Family (1626-1762), whereas: "Guiseppe was decidedly inspired at this period by his brother Pietro of Mantua: same full model, similarity of outline, light and raised edge, the f-holes and head forming a blend of father and brother."

     As suggested by the Hill Brothers of London, the free hand style of Guiseppe Guarneri Figlio D'Andrea during his early period shows certain peculiarities to the parental models of Casa Guarneri with the preference to local woods, period in which the violin herewith showcased was more than likely made. The model of this violin possibly inspired later productions by Guiseppe "Filius" such as the violin now called "Miss Bacon" depicted in the half-tone image on page 64-65 of the Hill Book. Also a notable as fact is that this Violin has similar dimensions as provided by the Hills Brothers of London in Appendix III to Chapter III (p.156) of a Giuseppe Filius Andrea violin made in 1696 because of possibly the same mould being used in Casa Guarneri. The same lenght of 13 7/8" size for violins of Casa Guaneri with 1/16" less at times was invariably used by Del Gesu as a norm in the years that followed.


     Top table suggests the use of Carpathian spruce of a wide grain. The arching is of a medium height and pinched broadening through the bouts flattening in the bridge area. Borders are light and raised. The original chestnut brown varnish has an orange tint hue. The coloration on this violin is as suggested by the Hill Brothers of London, was because of the use of acids by Casa Guarneri to bring about the more sober Brescian hue.

     Sound-holes are upright rather open with well conceived upper and lower curves in Amati style which are similarly to other violins made by in the Guarneri shop between 1680 to 1699. The arching is acoustically superior, very full outward curve to the arch thus developing a tone rich in harmonic colors.

     Back table and Sides are of Acer Opalus (Italian Maple) which is of native growth in the mountain tops of Italy. The wood is cut on the slab and is of small flames. The arching is similar to the top with powerful curves. The Scroll made in freehand style is original made of the same wood as the Back and Sides, which foreshadows the bold treatment of Bartolomeo Guiseppe Antonio Guarneri Del Gesu.

     There is a distinctive Imperial Double Headed Crowned Eagle shield located both at the back heel and inside this rare violin. The epigraphic branding of a Double Headed Eagle signifies that this violin was possibly used by a Royal Musician or an Army garrison of the Emperial House of Harbsburg which ruled most of Europe until the death of Charles II on November 1st in 1700 AD leading to the War of Succession from Spain from 1700-14. During those times the City of Cremona came under Bourbon Rule under the French Army of Louis the Great during the War of Succession from Spain. However, Cremona was again recaptured during the Battle of Cremona on February 1st 1702 by the armies of Emperor Leopold 1st of Harpsburg...... A similar Royal shield is also found in a 1676 Andreas Guarneri viola pictured by the Hill Book (Ibid p.24-25). Likewise, there is a Violino Piccolo made by Guarneri del Gesu in 1735 part of the published Schamback-Kaston Collection of Musical Instruments of Yale University with a similar Double Headed Eagle Royal shield.

     Repairs: Violin in very good state of preservation with no post cracks, most varnish intact, but with small repairs due to age including a wood insert on top of the end pin of the single piece lower rib possibly because of tail-gut wear, right sound hole lower inner wing repair possibly due to wear of soundpost adjustment tool, and bass side rib small fissure repairs.

     Dimensions: As stated above, this violin has similar dimensions to those provided for a Giuseppe Filius Andrea violin made in 1696 by the Hills Brothers of London in Appendix III to Chapter III (p.156) because of possibly the same violin form being used, dimensions which are as follows:

* Top Lenght: 13 7/8" inches bare.

* Upper Bout Width: 6 5/16" inches bare.

* Middle Bout Width: 4 5/16" inches bare.

* Lower Bout Width: 7 ¾" inches bare.





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