Makerascribed to Josef Dörfler.
Date MadeCirca 1740-1750
DescriptionSoundboard of spruce, one piece. Dendrochronological examination shows the last growth ring to date from 1735, and that the soundboard wood itself is closely related to the treble side of a Stradivarius violin dated 1733. One piece bridge of rosewood with inlaid ivory on top. Five slots in bridge for the various courses of strings. Inlaid vase and floralwork design in rosewood and ivory below the bridge. Soundhole 59mm diameter. Geometric and vinework pattern in rosewood and ivory in a wide band around the soundhole, immediately surrounded by alternate thin strips of rosewood and ivory. Outside a section of soundboard wood is a set of further rings of rosewood/ivory/rosewood. At the top of the soundboard where the soundboard wood extends onto the instrument's neck is a floral inlaid pattern in rosewood and ivory. There are alternate pieces of rosewood and ivory at the edge of the soundboard, with thin strips of ivory/rosewood/ivory/rosewood inside. The back and sides appear to be of spruce, the sides bookmatched with a tapered piece of rosewood at the bottom. The back is vaulted, of six sections, each separated by thin strips of rosewood. The heel and neck are of cypress(?), the heel of two pieces, that closest to the fingerboard is of the same piece of wood as the neck, and there is a glued piece to make up the full depth of the heel. The head is of cypress(?), attached to the neck by a splice joint. There are twelve tuning pegs of rosewood. The top of the head and the fingerboard are decorated with ivory inlaid into rosewood, in the form of a floral pattern surrounded by thin strips of ivory/rosewood/ivory and then inlaid diamonds, again surrounded by thin strips. Around the edge of the fingerboard, and forming a straight line near the edge of the head, are alternate strips of rosewood and ivory. The nut is of cypress(?), arranged so that the stringing is (from bass to treble) 3, 3, 2, 2, 2. The head is at a steeper angle than most guitars, similar to various Iberian (Portugese) instruments. Technical description: soundboard (one piece) of spruce, extends up neck 55mm. Grain wider in bass (8 grains per 25mm) than treble 25 grains per 25mm). Sides and back (arched over width, 6 ribs) of spruce. Neck and head of cypress (?), pegs of rosewood, fingerboard and bridge of rosewood with inlaid ivory. Soundhole diameter 59mm; bevel, outside diameter 66.5mm. Parchment glued on the interior, suggesting an original rose. Top of ribs curved in towards bottom. Fingerboard to head angle 33 degrees. 5 courses, 12 pegs (original), arranged (bass to treble) 3, 3, 2, 2, 2.
Notesd.p.|martin, 27.10.93, 2003.
ProvenancePurchased for the Royal Scottish Museum by public subscription in 1905. Formerly in the collection of the artist, Sir Joseph Noël Paton (1821-1901) who lived at 33 George Square and was made an Honorary LL.D. of the University in 1876; previously in the collection of the artist, William Borthwick Johnstone (1804-1868) the first director of the National Gallery of Scotland; previously in the collection of antiquarian and genealogist Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe (1781? - 1851).; Lent by the National Museums of Scotland, 1905.841.