Lorenzo Storioni, Cremona, c. 1785, the 'Roisman, Steinhardt'

Violin: 41111

Cut down from a small viola.

Back: Two-piece

Scroll: also by Storioni but not original to the instrument.


"Charles [Beare] told me that the violin, except for the scroll, was unquestionably the work of Cremonese master Lorenzo Storioni and that the instrument, probably made in the 1780s, was originally a small viola, so small that either Storioni himself or a later violinmaker decided to cut it down to violin size . . . .

Several weeks later, Jacques Francais served up an identical opinion but in addition made me an offer I ultimately could not refuse. Jacques explained that he had a del Gesù without its original scroll and that in his opinion I had a del Gesù scroll without . . . Here he stopped in midsentence. 'Excuse me, mon ami.' Jacques disappeared into the back of his shop and emerged moments later with a small Storioni viola scroll, which matched my instrument astonishingly well in both color and proportion. He contended that this was very possibly the violin;s original scroll, separated for profit years earlier by an unscrupulous dealer working in what amounted to a violin chop shop. "

Violin Dreams, Violin Dreams, New York


- Emil Hauser
until 1974 Joseph Roisman
from 1974 Current owner

Known players

Arnold Steinhardt, Emil Hauser, Josef Roisman

Certificates & Documents

  • Certificate: Rudolph Wurlitzer Co., New York, NY (1946) Jay Freeman: Attributes the instrument to Nicolo Bergonzi.
  • Certificate: Rudolph Wurlitzer Co., New York, NY (1932) Attributes the instrument to Michel Angelo Bergonzi.
  • Certificate: Otto Möckel, Berlin (1926) Attributes the instrument to Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu.
  • Certificate: Jacques Français, New York, NY #2154.

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 2008 Calendar, Newsquest Specialist Media, London (illustrated)
  • The Strad, July, 1988, R. D. Lawrence, London (illustrated)
  • The Jacques Français Rare Violins, Inc. Photographic Archive and Business Records, 1844-1998, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC (illustrated)
  • Violin Dreams, Houghton Mifflin Company, New York


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