Very Fine Viola by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, 1860

Very Fine Viola by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, 1860

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In excess of $600,000
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    J. B. Vuillaume

    Length of Back: 415 mm
    Upper Bout: 198 mm
    Lower Bout: 245 mm

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    This instrument bears the prestigious certification of J&A Beare, the world's foremost authority in fine stringed instruments.

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    Ariel Lang

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    About this Instrument

    About this Bow

    This viola is an exquisite example of the fine craftsmanship of Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, a distinguished French luthier of the mid-19th century. Hailing from his Parisian workshop in rue Demours, Ternes, this instrument dates back to around 1859-60 and is authenticated by Vuillaume's original label, serial number 2315, and the maker's signature and brand visibly etched on the interior of the back.


    One is immediately struck by the precision and clarity of this instrument's sound. The size makes it extremely comfortable to play for any violist and the viola feels very balanced throughout the whole register. It has impressive power and projection, making it ideally suited to a chamber musician or soloist. Despite this power, it offers a wonderful range of colours making it a versatile


    • Back : Crafted from a singular piece of strongly figured maple, with flames of medium width running more or less horizontally.
    • Sides and Scroll: The sides of the viola are of similar wood, while the scroll has a narrower figure.
    • Table: The table, formed from two pieces of select spruce, displays grains of medium width which broaden gradually towards the flanks.
    • Varnish: The viola is enveloped in a rich red-brown varnish laid over a lighter ground, creating a visual depth and luster that has aged gracefully over time.

    With a body length of 41.5 cm, and widths of 19.8 cm and 24.5 cm at the upper and lower bouts respectively, this viola is not only an instrument of visual beauty but also of remarkable acoustic quality. It is a prime example of Vuillaume's work, and quite possibly his finest viola of this size. It is a highly valued piece for any collector or musician, combining aesthetic beauty with the rich, nuanced sound that performers seek in a very fine viola. It is in an excellent state of preservation.

    Heritage by MyLuthier

    A curated selection of fine antique violins, violas, cellos and bows for discerning musicians and investors. We feature rare violins, violas, and cellos, representing both historical significance and unparalleled craftsmanship. Each instrument is in exceptional condition, and has been authenticated by world-leading authorities, backed by the latest in scientific analysis techniques.

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    Curated Antique Selection
    Exquisite and historically significant string instruments including violins, violas, and cellos, embodying exceptional craftsmanship.
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    Every instrument has been verified by globally recognised experts in the field.
    Invest in Excellence
    Every instrument in the Heritage Collection is a very fine example of the maker's work and carefully selected for its exceptional condition and verified provenance.
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