Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarneri 'del Gesù', Cremona, 1740, the 'Ysaÿe'

Violin: 40064

Bearing its original label.

Back: One-piece

Length of back: 35.3 cm

Upper bouts: 16.5 cm

Middle bouts: 11.05 cm

Lower bouts: 20.35 cm

There are 10 additional images in the archive which are not available publicly. Please contact us for more information.


It has been a top-class concert instrument throughout its life. This violin was once owned and greatly appreciated by the renowned virtuosos Eugene Ysaÿe (1858-1931) and Isaac Stern (1920-2001).

Nippon Music Foundation: Ysaye Guarneri

In 1928, when the violin was being repaired by the luthier Joseph Hel of Lille, Ysaÿe asked for a label to be inserted, with the inscription "Ce Del Jesus fut le fidèle compagnone de ma vie" (this violin was the faithful companion of my life), which it still bears alongside the authentic undisturbed label of its maker.

Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesú, Carlos Chiesa, John Dilworth, Roger Graham Hargrave, Stewart Pollens, Duane Rosengard & Eric Wen, Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesú (2 volumes), London

"At the very start of his career, Ysaÿe had managed to acquire an excellent violin by J. B. Guadagnini (1711-1786). One day a lady came to see him with a request for lessons and he was immediately struck by the beauty of her violin. It was a Joseph Guarnerius del Gesu of the most beautiful period of this pupil of Stradivarius.

He asked the lady if she would lend him the instrument to take with him on his American tour and this she could hardly refuse in consideration of his guarantee to insure it against all accidents. But this was only part of the transaction, which must surely be unique in the annals of such negotiations. On his return, he would keep the Guarnerius, leaving her the Guadagnini and 40,000 francs . . . as well as his brother Théophile as her husband."

Ysaÿe, Antoine Ysaÿe, Ysaÿe, Great Missenden


Jeanette Dincin
until 1875 Count Baldeschi
from 1875 H. B. Merton
in 1876 Sold by W. E. Hill & Sons
from 1876 John Adam
in 1882 and until 1885 David Laurie
1885-1889 André Wilmotte
in 1889 Gand & Bernardel, Freres
1889-1896 Carry Mess
from 1896 Eugène Ysaÿe
in 1937 Henri Quersin
from 1937 Charles Munch
from 1957 Anonymous
until 1958 Emil Herrmann, New York
1958-1965 Henry Hottinger
in 1965 Rembert Wurlitzer Inc.
1965-1995 Isaac Stern
from 1995 Nippon Music Foundation

Known players

Eugène Ysaÿe, Isaac Stern, Ivry Gitlis, Pinchas Zukerman, Sergey Khachatryan, Yehudi Menuhin

Certificates & Documents

  • Dendrochronology report: Peter Klein, Hamburg (1998) Dating the youngest tree ring to 1732.

Cozio holds copies of many certificates and other documents, some of which are available to view on request. Please contact us if you wish to view a particular document. (Note that we do not always have permission to share documents.)


  • The Strad 2006 Calendar, Newsquest Specialist Media, London (illustrated)
  • 36 Famous Italian Violins, Alex Wasinski, Herman Gordon, New York (illustrated)
  • The Strad, April, 2002, Naomi Sadler, Orpheus, London (illustrated)
  • Biography of Isaac Stern
  • Cremona 1730-1750: the Olympus of Violin Making, Christopher Reuning, editor, Consorzio Liutai Antonio Stradivari, Cremona (illustrated)
  • Eugène Ysaÿe and his violins, Cozio Carteggio feature, Tully Potter, July 18, 2018
  • Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesú (2 volumes), Carlos Chiesa, John Dilworth, Roger Graham Hargrave, Stewart Pollens, Duane Rosengard & Eric Wen, Peter Biddulph, London (illustrated)
  • Henry Hottinger Collection (illustrated)
  • Italian Violin Makers (1964), Karel Jalovec, Paul Hamlyn, London, 1964 (illustrated)
  • Journal of the Violin Society of America, Vol. XV, No. 3, Samuel Zygmuntowicz, The Queens College Press, Flushing, NY (illustrated)
  • Nippon Music Foundation Instrument Recipients
  • Nippon Music Foundation: Ysaye Guarneri
  • Private Archives - 10842
  • The Strad, October, 1994, John Dilworth, Orpheus, London (illustrated)
  • The Jacques Français Rare Violins, Inc. Photographic Archive and Business Records, 1844-1998, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC (illustrated)
  • The Miracle Makers, Bein & Fushi, Chicago (illustrated)
  • The Violin Makers of the Guarneri Family, W. Henry, Arthur F. & Alfred E. Hill, William E. Hill & Sons, London, 1931 (illustrated)
  • The Violin Masterpieces of Guarneri del Gesù - Exhibition, Peter Biddulph, Peter Biddulph, London (illustrated)
  • Ysaÿe, Antoine Ysaÿe, W. E. Hill & Sons, Great Missenden


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