Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarneri 'del Gesù', Cremona, 1733, the 'Lafont-Siskovsky'

Violin: 40399

Back: Two-piece

Length of back: 35.1 cm

Upper bouts: 16.4 cm

Middle bouts: 10.7 cm

Lower bouts: 20 cm

There are 9 additional images in the archive which are not available publicly. Please contact us for more information.


". . . the instrument is well known to all connoisseurs in London, and Messrs. Hill, Hart, and other experts, admit it to be one of the best preserved Guarnerius known. Its characteristic qualities consist outwardly in its having no crack or blemish of any kind, a good deal of fine dark amber varnish left, and a notch in the table, classing it with three or four well-known violins made from the same piece of wood."

Celebrated Violins and Their Owners, Eugene Polonaski, The Violin Times, November, 1897, London

"The belly exhibits the well-known sapstain which is to be seen more or less plainly on the great majority of the maker's violins, and this is distinctly shown in the photograph. Hart was, I believe, the first writer to draw attention to this peculiarity. Its occurrence has been questioned by one or two subsequent writers whose opportunities or powers of observation must obviously have been somewhat limited. It may be seen repeatedly by anyone who has eyes and will take the trouble to look for it ; and it has on more than one occasion helped to settle the authenticity of an otherwise dubious specimen. According to Hart this piece of pine from which Joseph cut his bellies must have passed into the possession of Carlo Bergonzi, as he cites three fiddles by that maker in which the stain is met with, and which for a long time passed as the work of Guarneri."

The 'Lafont Joseph', Towry Piper, The Strad, 1913, London


Sold by Bein & Fushi, Inc
George Herbert
Sold by W. E. Hill & Sons
Sold by Bein & Fushi, Inc
Dr Mark Ptashne
until 1839 Charles Philippe Lafont
from 1839 William Davis
until 1857 James Goding
in 1857 Sold by Christie & Manson
until 1862 Edward Withers
1862-1908 Carl Deichmann
until 1912 Robert Augustus Bower
1912-1931 J. Frederick Gilfillan
1931-1969 Jaroslav Siskovsky
from 1942 Herman Salomon
from 1969 Erick Friedman
until 1976 Étienne Vatelot
from 1976 Salvatore Accardo
from 1980 Michel Scheinen
until 1988 Bernard Goldblatt
from 1988 Joji L. Hattori
from 1990 Chi-Mei Culture Foundation
in c. 2010 Chi-Mei Culture Foundation

Certificates & Documents

  • Certificate: Bein & Fushi, Inc, Chicago, IL (1991)
  • Certificate: W. E. Hill & Sons, London (1940)
  • Certificate: W. E. Hill & Sons, London (1912)

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.)


  • Triennale internazionale degli strumenti ad arco, Cremona (illustrated)
  • Bein & Fushi 1985 Calendar, Bein & Fushi, Inc, Bein & Fushi, Chicago (illustrated)
  • Bein & Fushi 1987 Calendar, Bein & Fushi, Inc, Bein & Fushi, Chicago (illustrated)
  • Bein & Fushi 1995 Calendar, Bein & Fushi, Inc, Bein & Fushi, Chicago (illustrated)
  • The Violin Times, November, 1897, Eugene Polonaski, edited by E. Polanski, London
  • Cremona 1730-1750: the Olympus of Violin Making, Christopher Reuning, editor, Consorzio Liutai Antonio Stradivari, Cremona (illustrated)
  • Private Archives - 10072
  • Private Archives - 10746
  • The Strad, 1913, Towry Piper, London, Jan 1913 (illustrated)
  • The Chi-Mei Collection of Fine Violins, Jen-wu Chen, Chi-Mei Culture Foundation (illustrated)


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