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Cello

Cello

  • Place of origin:

    Venice (Made)

  • Date:

    1700-1800 (Made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown (Made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Sawed and planed back of sycamore; planed and purfled (bordered) belly of pine.

  • Credit Line:

    Given to the Museum by Mme Amelia Gérardy in memory of her husband Jean Gérardy.

  • Museum number:

    W.4-1950

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

By about 1750, the 'cellos had largely replaced the bass viol as the main source of lower range notes in the string section of an orchestra or ensemble. This instrument belonged to Jean Gérardy (1877 - 1929), a leading Belgian cellist who toured extensively throughout Europe and America from about 1890 until 1920. Although it has a 1711 Stradivarius label, this instrument was probably made in Venice some time later on in the 18th century.

Physical description

'Belly of two pieces of pine, back of two pieces of sycamore. Inlaid purfling of two black lines and one light. The body has been altered from its original shape. The later neck shows much use, and the pegholes have twice been plugged and redrilled' - Anthony Baines: Catalogue of Musical Instruments in the Victoria and Albert Museum - Part II: Non-keyboard instruments (London, 1998), p. 19.

Place of Origin

Venice (Made)

Date

1700-1800 (Made)

Artist/maker

Unknown (Made)

Materials and Techniques

Sawed and planed back of sycamore; planed and purfled (bordered) belly of pine.

Marks and inscriptions

Antonius Stradivarius Cremoneniis [sic] Faciebat Anno 1[7]11
Antonio Stradivario of Cremona made this in 1711
This is printed on a label, which was probably taken from another instrument. Placing Stradivarius labels in other instruments, often old and of high quality, was a widespread practice from the 19th century onwards.

Dimensions

Length: 124.5 cm total length, Length: 75 cm length of belly, Width: 34.5 cm width of upper bout, Width: 23 cm Width of central bout, Width: 44.5 cm width of lower bout, Depth: 30.5 cm, Length: 143 cm string length

Object history note

This instrument was given to the museum in 1950 by Mme Amelia Gérardy in memory of her husband Jean Gérardy (1877 - 1929), a distinguished Belgian 'cellist.

Descriptive line

Sycamore body and pine belly, Venice, 1700-1800

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Anthony Baines: Catalogue of Musical Instruments in the Victoria and Albert Museum - Part II: Non-keyboard instruments. (London, 1998), p. 19.

Materials

Sycamore; Pine

Techniques

Sawing; Planing; Purfling

Categories

Musical instruments

Collection

Furniture and Woodwork Collection

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