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Bass viol, since converted to violoncello

back: completely detached from rest of body; 2 pieces of hard plain wood; edges slightly bevelled; no purfling, but parallel lines of black ink or paint. Belly: 1 piece of pine, gently arched overall, with a slight dip at the edge; no purfling, but parallel lines of black ink or paint; soundholes: 2 separate flame-shaped holes on each side, pointing in opposite directions, and the lower of each pair rounded like the top of an f-hole; each hole 60 long; the bridge stood in line with the space between them (23mm); brown spirit varnish, ?not original. Inside: cello-type of bass-bar secured with 13 studs through the belly; end-hook (tailpillar) secured to block with 4 big iron screws. Neck: held on by a screw sunk deep into the top block. Corner blocks below the upper bouts are of oak at rh, ?poplar / ?willow on lh; no lower corners. Neck: a cello fingerboard of ebony, later than the body, secured with 3 studs. Bridge: as for 19c cello, but grooved for 6 strings. Tailpiece: whitewood painted black, cut for 6 strings. Pegbox: as for cello, but bored for 6 strings; 6 pegs, ?older than 19c, but of 3 different kinds (2 of oak, 3 of sycamore, 1 of rosewood). Head: ca1730/40 French in style, carefully spliced into pegbox; female head, oval-faced with long nose, pursed lips, upturned gaze; hair swept back into a stylised bow like a bun, with cap on top like a scallop shell with a small disc at the front. Length 1130, back 645, width 320/235/375, ribs 125

  • Culture:
  • Period:late 16th century
  • Materials:
  • Specific materials/techniques:
  • Decorative elements:
  • Inscriptions:inside rh ribs, printed label: HENRIE / IAYE: IN / SOVTHWARKE / - 1615 -|inside back: do., handwritten|handwritten inside rh ribs: This violoncello was given to Mr Newcomb School Master of Marchington Staffordshire to Henry Richd. Rice school Master of Doveridge in the year of our Lord 1821 & by him entirely Repaired.|inside on end block, handwritten: This violoncello was entirely New worked. The back and a new neck put on it, and re-made up by H.R. Rice of Doveridge 1823
  • Hornbostel-Sachs category:
  • Repository:Royal Northern College of Music