123ArticleOnline Logo
Welcome to 123ArticleOnline.com!
ALL >> Music >> View Article

The 12 Apostles Violin Cases By W.e. Hill And Sons

By Author: Nathan Weiss
Total Articles: 9

They don’t make the music but ensure the instrument gets to its audiences. This London violinmaker created some of the most beautiful cases ever made.

When is a package or container almost as valued as its contents? One imagines the Fabergé eggs as an incomparable embodiment and celebration of the exterior. On a much grander scale, some of the great concert halls of the world - the Culture and Congress Centre Concert Hall in Lucerne, the Boston Symphony Hall, Grosser Musikvereinssaal in Vienna, Berlin’s Philharmonie, the Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall, and the Christchurch Town Hall Auditorium (New Zealand) come to mind - are a type of packaging for the impressive music created within their walls.

There are violin cases that are or were made to approximate the beauty and craftsmanship of the fine violins held inside. Before the advent of scientifically driven case details (humidity gauges and the like), there were the 12 Apostles Violin Cases made by the W.E. Hill & Sons shop in London. As the name implies, there were only a dozen made (on New Bond Street, noticeably in the neighborhood of the Fabergé shop), perhaps because few could afford the opulence and fine workmanship that went into building these cases.

Lest anyone question the value of a case, which produces no music at all, consider the fact that one of the 12 Apostles sold at auction in 2016 for $17,220.

The Hill family violin shop, led by founder Willam Ebsworth Hill (1817-1895) existed for 105 years (1887-1992), but actually drew from a history of luthiers stretching back to Hill’s great grandfather. The firm made both violins and cellos, but was respected for its work in repairs, bows, fittings, identification and authentication, and ultimately, for fine case making.

The prized 12 Apostles were limited because of the extravagant time required to make them. The violin shop’s own brochure floridly described them: “In our opinion, the case containing so fine a work of art as a good violin should be pleasing and indeed beautiful....we endeavor, by the use of choice wood, and ornamental inlaid bordering, and the highest quality workmanship throughout, to make them as beautiful as possible, and receptacles worthy of fine violins.”

That workmanship included handmade locks and flush-bolts, a lined button (with cork) made to hold the bow, and intricate patterns of inlaid wood in musical motifs. All 12 are different - at least one case has its own covering of leather, a case over a case - and several have held violins by the fabled violinmaker, Antonio Stradivarius.

Such rich detailing on a case is not out of place, considering the time and place of the most accomplished violin, viola, and cello players of the day. Great concerts were attended by the higher echelons of society of the 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Higher still were the courts and palaces where the most sought after musicians of the Victorian era - can you say Paganini? - would be hired to entertain private audiences. The etiquette of that time was excruciatingly precise; the arrival of the musician must clearly have been an observed and choreographed moment. To be dressed in the finest of clothes might also require an exquisite violin case.

Fine instrument cases, clearly the work of artists, do not have a catalogue raisonné as with the work of acclaimed visual artists. So the precise whereabouts of all of Hill’s 12 Apostles is not clear (based on an Internet search). The 2016 auction price might have raised the profile of this rarified group, sufficiently so such that any that are lost in an attic or orchestra hall storage room might turn up in the future.

Total Views: 316Word Count: 609See All articles From Author

Music Articles

1. Bring Life To Your Party With Retro Jukeboxes!
Author: Laurie Hekeik

2. How To Select Custom Dvd Printing And Packaging Services
Author: Gary Allen

3. Sing Your Heart Out To The Karaoke At The Parties To Be Positive And Healthier
Author: Laurie Hekeik

4. The Benefits Of Using Wireless Headphones
Author: Kumar Ram

5. Noise Cancelling Headphones Are Not Merely A Travel Accessory - They're A Travel Necessity
Author: Kumar Ram

6. Bollywood Dance Classes Melbourne – Best Way To Get Fit
Author: Deepak Bhardwaj

7. Best Music School In Delhi
Author: aayushi kumari

8. Find 1920s Dancers For Hire To Add Ultimate Fun
Author: Swingpatrol

9. The 1920s Dancers For Hire Can Surely Add Great Fun To Your Party
Author: Swing Patrol

10. Select An Accredited Agency For Quality Disc And Cd Duplication Plus Printing Services
Author: Gary Allen

11. Online Carnatic Music Classes
Author: saamaveda

12. Become Emotionally Healthier By Listening To Your Favourite Music
Author: Laurie Hekeik

13. Two Way Radio Equipment Market 2018| Global Coverage| Invelco, Nautel, Danphone And Barrett
Author: jeffry Hoffman

14. A Revelation, Why People Opt For Video Production Services In Gold Coast?
Author: 18 degg

15. Hire A Modern Retro Juke Box And Party The Right Away
Author: Laurie Hekeik

Login To Account
Login Email:
Forgot Password?
New User?
Sign Up Newsletter
Email Address: