Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarneri 'del Gesù', Cremona, 1734, the 'Violon du Diable'


Violin: 40405

Back: Two-piece; from the same log as the "Haddock"

Length of back: 35.05 cm

Upper bouts: 16.4 cm

Middle bouts: 10.9 cm

Lower bouts: 20.4 cm

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Notes:

In 1849, Saint-Léon devised and performed, both as dancer and violinist, a piece composed by Pugni entitled "Le Violon du Diable," and this name has stayed with the instrument ever since.

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


Instrument #93 at the South Kensington Special Exhibition of 1872.

Catalogue of the Special Exhibition at South Kensington, England, Carl Engel, Catalogue of the Special Exhibition at South Kensington, England, London


andrewrosthorn@me.com Charles-Eugène Fau, 1819-1879, may have bought this instrument through his dealer J.B. Vuillaume, after the London exhibition, but Eugène Fau died childless soon afterwards in 1879. His brother, Auguste Fau, 1812-1886, was his légataire universel. The instrument was then inherited in 1886 by Auguste Fau’s son, Émile Fau of Mazamet. W.E. Hill & Son bought the Violon du Diable for 35,000 francs after Émile Fau had died in 1910. They had learned by letter from Mazamet that Fau was seriously ill and that he had already given his Fau 1716 Stradivarius violin to his daughter and the Stradivarius cello, Fau, Castelbarco 1707, to his son Pierre Fau. Source: a surviving label, hand-written by Fau and tied by string to the Fau 1716.

Provenance

from 1820 Rossel de Minet
- Luigi Tarisio
- Sold by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume
in 1849 Arthur Saint-Léon
... ...
in 1872 Madame Fleury
c. 1872 - 1879 Eugène Fau
c. 1879 - 1886 Auguste Fau
1886 - 1910 Émile Fau
1910 - 1913 W. E. Hill & Sons
... ...
in 1931 Richard Bennett
until 1972 W. E. Hill & Sons
from 1972 Dr. Rene Pierre Lacombe
- Sold by Jacques Francais
- Current owner

Known players

Arthur Saint-Léon

Certificates & Documents

  • Dendrochronology report: Peter Klein, Hamburg (1998) Dating the youngest tree ring to 1720. Rings match the wood used for the table of the 1734 "Haddock" (ID=411) and the 1734 "Baltic" (ID=410).

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.)

References

  • Catalogue of the Special Exhibition at South Kensington, England, Carl Engel, South Kensington Museum, London (illustrated)
  • The Strad, October, 1994, Stewart Pollens, Orpheus, London (illustrated)
  • Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesú (2 volumes), Carlos Chiesa, John Dilworth, Roger Graham Hargrave, Stewart Pollens, Duane Rosengard & Eric Wen, Peter Biddulph, London (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
  • The Violin Masterpieces of Guarneri del Gesù - Exhibition, Peter Biddulph, Peter Biddulph, London (illustrated)

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