Vuillaume A Paris – Mirecourt Trade Violin Bow circa 1910 – CURRENTLY OUT ON TRIAL –


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Bows were not always considered as important as they are today. The future of bowmaking changed in the small city of Mirecourt in the eighteenth century. Located in the Northeast Vosges region of France, Mirecourt drove innovation in bowmaking and influenced French bow making from the Baroque period to the modern day. By 1732, the Mirecourt luthiers were numerous enough to establish their own guild. The guild established strict quality controls for instruments, which encouraged Mirecourt’s violin makers to develop their skills to the highest possible level. The increased international trade of the 18th century gave Mirecourt luthiers two other important edges in the industry: the city’s role as a commercial center in France and access to quality Pernambuco wood from Brazil. Records from 1756 reveal bowmaking began to assert itself as its own craft in Mirecourt. Although bows remained anonymous and were not always stamped with their maker’s brand, bowmaking was finally stepping into the forefront.

Our stamped Vuillaume A Paris violin bow was actually made in the famous town of Mirecourt. In its heyday 1800-1920 Mirecourt employed over 3000 workers in the violin trade, from apprentices to journeyman makers. Our bow is from the early 20th century and is in excellent condition. The bow is stamped with one of the most famous names of the industry – a good selling point for a bow made in Mirecourt. We have meticulously gone over the entire stick and replaced the tip as well as German silver winding and leather thumb. The pernambuco wood of the stick is very nice, round in section, clear and straight. The stick is semi-firm with some flex and handles well. The frog is Parisian eye with nickel mounts, typical of the period. The ebony frog has rounded chamfers and feels nice in the hand. The stick has a gram weight of 62.3 grams but is so well balanced that it plays like a 60.0 gram bow. Yes, the bow plays very well. It surprised me at how nice a sound it could pull out of the violins I tried. If you were looking to find a sweet French bow this could be the one. If you need another violin case, this time that holds four bows, we have them too.

Weight fully haired 62.3 grams