Origin viola with V-shaped purfling
Can somebody please help me to ascertain the origin of my viola? I've shown it to two experts. They both agree it's an old instrument, 18th or even late 17th century, but they weren't able to place it with precision. The V-shaped purfling on the neck heel is original.
Try posting more detailed pictures on maestronet.com
it would almost have to have a neck scroll graft to be that old, it looks more like 1800s to me, south german type construction??
the position of the G peg is blocking our view of where a neck graft would be, try an unobstructed view of the heel of the scroll from both sides if possible
In any case the corners indicate Built on Back construction, which is usually south German or Saxony.
That's a pretty instrument ... I love the scroll especially. What kind of CR is that? I've never seen that V in the purfling before, but I'm not in the trade.
The purfling under the nut makes it more fragile and prone to crack, so some makers decided leave this region without purfling. Some original Guadagninis have no purfling under the nut.
That's called the button in English, Manfio, and yes you are right, the purfling across the button increase the chances of a catastrophic break if the neck breaks out.
A picture from the other side of the scroll:
That is one gorgeous viola! Sorry I know that doesn’t help but I couldn’t resist.
You've got the light reflecting right where the graft would be in your new picture of the scroll. SO you can't tell anything.
like I said before try posting on maestronet.com, they have a couple experts that should be able to tell you more about it, jacob saunders, peter ratcliff, and blank face, you can pretty much ignore other opinions!!
I have a soft spot for instruments like this one..... almost obscure look, a humble statement of the maker, but possibly a very, very nice sound.
Very nice looking viola.
The grafted scroll indicates a good chance it dates before 1850, more than that it doesn't really say, I would guess early 1800s Saxon for origin.