Instruments Owned by Nippon Music Foundation

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Stradivarius

Stradivarius 1700 Violin

“Dragonetti”

  • “Dragonetti”
  • “Dragonetti”
  • “Dragonetti”

Feature

The back is in one piece of wood, marked by a handsome medium curl ascending to the right, that of the sides and head being similar. The table is marked by very fine grain at the center, becoming more open towards the flanks. The varnish is warm gold in color, largely unworn. Unusually, the neck is still original as noted in the W. E. Hill & Sons certificate in 1960. It is a typical and very handsome example of Stradivari’s work and is in an excellent state of preservation.

History

The name of the violin was taken from Domenico Dragonetti (1763-1846), a distinguished Italian virtuoso double bass player, who possessed it with great care.

The instrument was brought from Italy to England by the English dealer Betts, and in 1818, it was passed to Mr. Rivas, a well-known amateur player in England of his time, who also owned other fine instruments. In 1835, it passed into the hand of Mr. de Rougemont, and was subsequently bought by the novelist Charles Reade, who was a keen violin collector. In 1852, it was sold by Mr. Alvey Turner of Cheapside to Mr. Bashall and it remained in the possession of his family until it was purchased by W. E. Hill & Sons of England in 1910. In 1912 it passed into the hands of Mr. Richard Bennett, who possessed the most famous collection of Italian instruments of the 20th century. In 1929, he disposed of his entire collection to W. E. Hill & Sons. In 1958, it was exhibited at the Exhibition of Antique Art Treasures held in Bath, England, representing the instruments owned by W. E. Hill & Sons. In 1960, it passed into the hands of violinist Alfredo Campoli (1906-1991) and subsequently it was possessed by Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale (WestLB), which loaned it to a celebrated violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann. In June 2002, Nippon Music Foundation acquired this instrument from the WestLB through a luthier.

Certificate

Stradivarius 1700 Violin “Dragonetti”

June 20, 2002 John & Arthur Beare, to Nippon Music Foundation
June 23, 1988 John & Arthur Beare, to Olivier Jaques
April 30, 1963 W. E. Hill & Sons, to Alfredo Campoli

Reference

Stradivarius 1700 Violin “Dragonetti”

April 18, 2002 Andrew Hill, Report to Nippon Music Foundation
December 9, 1960 W. E. Hill & Sons, History Letter to Campoli

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