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Joseph Hellmer Violin c.1790

Karl Josef Hellmer (b. 1739, d. 1811) was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia (Czech Republic) to luthier Johann Georg. His father trained him in the craft and Hellmer went on to study with Johann Ulrich Eberle. After working for some time in Germany, Hellmer returned to Prague and continued making instruments. Hellmer was also an expert performer, a music publisher, and the co-chairman of his local violin maker’s guild.

This Hellmer violin is Bohemian but could easily pass for an old Italian model. The fine grain, rich colored varnish, and full sound has led many to believe that it originates from Italy. This Hellmer violin is in excellent condition for its age and boasts a warm, rich tone with outstanding carrying power.


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