The Varnishes of the Italian Violin-makers of the Sixteenth, Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, and Their Influence on Tone

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Stevens & Sons, limited, 1904 - Varnish and varnishing - 170 pages
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Contents

I
1
II
9
III
32
IV
53
V
61
VI
93
VII
112

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Page 48 - word. Instruments by continual use are apt to " become weary. They may even virtually be killed. " Give them rests. We feel it a duty to urge most " strongly that fine instruments should not be brought " to premature death by ceaseless use.
Page 47 - When due consideration is given to all the observed facts, only one conclusion appears possible : that the deteriorating influence is vibration, which causes a kind of dislocation of the fibrous cells of the wood — they slip or move on each other without much friction or adhesion — individual motion becomes more or less possible. When varnish penetrates the wood so as to produce a practically homogeneous diaphragm, this dislocating action of the vibrations is prevented.
Page 9 - André ; ces instrumeus consistaient en vingt-quatre violons dont douze étaient de grand patron et douze plus petits, six violes et huit basses. M. Cartier, qui a vu deux de ces violons , affirme que rien ne surpasse la perfection de leur travail. Ils étaient revêtus d'un vernis à l'huile d'un ton doré avec des reflets d'un brun rougeâlre.
Page 11 - The Venetian is also of various shades, chiefly light " red, and exceedingly transparent. The Neapolitan " varnish (a generic term including that of Milan and " a few other places) is very clear, and chiefly yellow " in colour, but wanting the dainty softness of the
Page 114 - mostly of a rich brown colour and soft texture, but " not so clear as the Cremonese. The Cremonese is " of various shades, the early instruments of the school " being chiefly amber-coloured, afterwards deepening " into a light red of charming appearance ; later still " into a rich brown of the Brescian type, though more " transparent, and frequently broken up, while the " earlier kinds are velvet-like. The Venetian is also " of various shades, - chiefly light red, and exceed
Page 12 - Guarnerius, and is so distinct and telling that it is sure to impress the eye of the experienced when first seen. The varnish of Bergonzi is often fully as resplendent as that of Joseph Guarnerius or Stradiuarius, and shows him to have been initiated in the mysteries of its manufacture. It is sometimes seen to be extremely thick, at other times but sparingly laid on ; often of a deep, rich red colour, sometimes of a pale red, and, again, of rich amber,, so that the variation of colour to be met with...
Page 12 - In these there culminates the most exquisite finish, a thoroughly artistic and original form, and the most handsome material. In some cases the lustre of the wood of the backs, set in its chasing of deep amber, that unrivalled varnish, may be likened to the effect produced by the setting summer sun on cloud and wave.
Page 11 - Brescian as mostly of a rich brown " colour and soft texture, but not so clear as the " Cremonese. The Cremonese is of various shades, " the early instruments of the school being chiefly " amber-coloured, afterwards deepening into light red " of charming appearance, later still into a rich brown " of the Brescian type, though more transparent.
Page 10 - an almost complete resemblance " between the material of Gaspard di Salo and that of " his coadjutors, the colouring only being different." " Upon turning to the Cremonese, we find that " Joseph Guarnerius, Stradiuarius, Carlo Bergonzi, " and a few others used varnish having the same " characteristics, but, again, different in shade.
Page 99 - RESINS. trees which produce them, when they exude in the form of a viscid liquid, consisting of the resin in solution in the essential oil of the plant. In the majority of cases they are formed by the oxidation of the essential oils contained in the trees ; hence it is not surprising that in many instances they have the composition of oxides of the hydrocarbon O20H32, or of a hydrocarbon derived from this, having lost a certain number of atoms of hydrogen in exchange for half that number of atoms...

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