The Violin Family and Its Makers in the British Isles: An Illustrated History and Directory

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Clarendon Press, 1995 - Music - 432 pages
Professor Harvey explains in detail the history of violin-making in Britain, from one of the earliest extant English instruments made of iron by John Bunyan in about 1647, to the extensive British craft industry of today, including within his book a comprehensive directory of violin- and bow-makers of the British Isles, with auction prices. The book includes numerous high-quality colour and monochrome illustrations, including samples of the work of the major craftsmen involved. Throughout most of this history the scene has been dominated by the Hill family, which for over 250 years has produced first instruments then also bows of the highest quality, and their influence is fully assessed. The book is also a social and economic history of stringed instruments, showing how in England in particular the violin was slow to win acceptance by being associated with profanity, and how the cello became the instrument favoured by royalty and aristocracy. The demand for instruments at any particular time is gauged against musical activity in the country and competition from France and Germany. The book is the first in any language to deal with this vast and fascinating subject in this way and in such depth. As such, it will be welcomed by makers, dealers internationally, auction houses, collectors, teachers, players, and students of stringed instruments.

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Contents

CONSTRUCTION METHODS MATERIALS AND TECHNIQUES
37
ENGLISH ViolinMAKERS OF THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY
66
ENGLISH MUSIC AND MAKERS IN THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY
95
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About the author (1995)

Brian W. Harvey is at University of Birmingham.

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