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twinb1201, Appraiser, Researcher
Category: Musical Instrument Appraisal
Satisfied Customers: 8296
Experience:  Classically trained musician with more than 20 years experience appraising musical instruments.
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I am trying to identify a violin

Customer Question

I am trying to identify a violin
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Musical Instrument Appraisal
Expert:  twinb1201 replied 2 years ago.
My name is ***** ***** I'll be pleased to help you with this question.

Please give me the exact wording on the label in the violin.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Joeseph Guarnerius fecit IHS + Cremonia ano 17
The ia in cremonia almost looks like two backward ss
The body measurements are 13.75 inches
I can send photos tomorrow
Expert:  twinb1201 replied 2 years ago.
Photos will not be necessary. Thanks for this information.

You have a 7/8 size violin. It is a workshop copy of a Guarnerius model, made in a factory, most likely in Germany circa the turn of the 20th century. These were turned out by the thousands for export. They are still considered to be good student instruments today.

If your violin is in very good condition with very good tone, its current retail (replacement or insurance) value is approximately $1,000. If you were to sell it, you could expect to get the fair market (private sale or auction) value of 40% of the retail amount, or approximately $400, depending on location and actual condition.

I hope this answer has been helpful to you. If you have any further questions or problems concerning your answer, please reply to me before deciding to leave a negative rating, which does affect my job.

If you would like to work with me on further questions you might have, it would be a pleasure to work with you again. All you have to do is put my name (Judith) at the beginning of your question.

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Thank you so much!
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I would like to have a little more information as to why your think it is copy made in Germany. I did a little research and understand that most of the copies are 4/4, and the first test is to measure. A real Del gesu would have a measurement of 13 and 7/8 inches, sometimes minus 1/16 inch. (This is from the Smithsonian website) It also would be in set-up as baroque.

If you have a reason that this violin is for sure a copy please explain.

This violin was in storage for over 100years and came from my great-grandfather that traveled extensively through Europe.

I would just like a little more info if possible.

Thank you

Expert:  twinb1201 replied 2 years ago.
The reason I am sure this is not a genuine Del Gesu is because the label does not read correctly for a genuine one. And many copies have been made in different sizes.

Certainly, a copy could be a hundred years old. The age is really not an indicator.

Then there is the fact that the location of all Joseph Guarnieri violins still in existence are known.

If you still feel that your violin is genuine, the only way to know for sure is through a personal examination and playing by an expert luthier.

If you can tell me the nearest large city to you, I can make recommendations for you.

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