Pieter Rombouts, Amsterdam: Fine violin circa 1720 (certificate by Serge Stam)

This rare Dutch violin which was crafted around 1720 is a late work by the Amsterdam master Pieter Rombouts (1667-1728), who is considered the most prominent figure of classic Dutch violin making of his time – alongside Hendrick Jacobs, his stepfather, teacher and predecessor in their joint atelier. The supremely confident nonchalance that Pieter Rombouts expressed in this exceptionally well-executed instrument was fully justified: at the time it was made, he had successfully been managing the workshop he had inherited for some for some fifteen years, and having become a man of great means, Pieter Rombouts had nothing...

This rare Dutch violin which was crafted around 1720 is a late work by the Amsterdam master Pieter Rombouts (1667-1728), who is considered the most prominent figure of classic Dutch violin making of his time – alongside Hendrick Jacobs, his stepfather, teacher and predecessor in their joint atelier. The supremely confident nonchalance that Pieter Rombouts expressed in this exceptionally well-executed instrument was fully justified: at the time it was made, he had successfully been managing the workshop he had inherited for some for some fifteen years, and having become a man of great means, Pieter Rombouts had nothing left he needed to prove in his final decade. He spent his entire career working with Hendrick Jacobs, who was said to be trained by Amati, and he refined his excellent talent within the confines of the family business. It is a testimony to Hendrick Jacobs’ work as a teacher (it is rumoured that that Hendrick Jacobs was trained under Amati himself) that he allowed the then barely 20-year-old Pieter Rombouts his own stylistic touches, which were clearly evident as of 1686. This fine old master violin is a self-assured piece work which does not follow the Amati model Jacobs frequently pursued; instead, it is patterned after the high-tabled instruments of Jacob Stainer, whose work at the time was highly sought after. One indication of Rombouts’ mature mastery is the premium tone woods he chose with their interesting grains; a dendrochronologic appraisal of the rings show the wood dates back between 1599 and 1714. The moderately-grained spruce of the top and especially the striking flames of the two-piece maple back give the violin an unmistakable profile; an unusually lovely and luminous coat of highly transparent varnish puts the instrument in its best light and impressively refutes older opinions that researchers have held about Pieter Rombouts' varnishes. Many generations of musicians have shaped the character of this historic instrument and left their traces; over time, other luthiers (including the employees of our restoration atelier) have skillfully repaired various cracks and restored the instrument with the great care that a violin of such historic and musical value deserves. A dendrochronological report by Arjaan Versteeg, Munich and a certificate issued by Utrecht expert Serge Stam are included in the price and authenticate the violin, which has been meticulously set up and is ready to play. We recommend it because of its unique personality and its wonderfully delicate, sophisticated sound which is mature, golden and melting.

 
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Pieter Rombouts, Amsterdam: Fine violin from around 1720 (certificate Serge Stam) - scroll view
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