A scientific method for precisely determining the age of the instruments
The Institut für Holzbiologie of the University of Hamburg has begun an extensive study on the instruments of the collection. Ten instruments have to date been analysed by Dr. Peter Klein and Dipl.-Holzwirt Micha Beuting. The results have amazed us. You can read the results on the following pages:
Violas da gamba treble
Violas da gamba bass
One of the most astonishing findings of these two researchers can be seen above. The sound hole on the left comes from a treble viol in festoon shape purchased in Spain around 1978. The sound hole on the right comes from a treble viol purchased at auction at Bonhams in 1998. I purchased this second viol, on the hunch that it was a twin of the first one. Dendrochronology has only now revealed not only the date of these two instruments: ca. 1730, but also that the tops were constructed from the very same tree! These two sisters, which had been separated for nearly 300 years, are now happily reunited and making music together again!