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Treble viol

Viol with violin outline, converted to viola by Nathaniel Cross; modified later. Front, two-piece, carved, of fine to medium grain; C-shaped soundholes, shallow arching and golden-brown varnish. Ribs of ?plum. Striped back of five strips, the centre and outer pieces of bird’s-eye maple, the other two of ?plum. Double purfling on front and back with elongated points and a small dart at the button. Front and back are flush with the ribs. Upper, original, fold in back has no reinforcement inside. When the instrument was converted to viola, the lower end of the back was angled to reduce the depth at the tail. Neck and pegbox of plain maple. Plugged hole at tailblock, indicating former tailbutton rather than hookbar. Extra layers of wood were added later to front and back on the bass side, to form an integral rest for the player’s chin and shoulder.

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  • Inscriptions:Restorer’s label, printed, on soundpost plate: "Nathaniel Cross"
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  • Repository:Royal College of Music Museum
  • Measurements:Length: 690.5mm. Width: 243mm.