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A violin by Joseph Hel, Lille, France, 1886

Price range: £25,000 - £50,000

Find out more about this maker here

Extremely fine example by the great French  maker, Joseph Hel. Beautiful Stradivari model with a fine 2 piece back. Hel violins are well known in the trade for being great value. This violin is over 100 years old yet is less than many new violins. I find it hard to go past this great level of workmanship.

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Pierre Joseph Hel (1842-1902)apprenticed in Mirecourt with Salzard before working for Sebastien Vuillaume in Paris and Nicolas Darche. In 1865 he opened his own shop in Lille, where he produced over 750 instrument until his death in 1902. Hel mostly used classical Cremonese patterns, but Maggini was also an inspiration. His craftsmanship and materials were excellent, with good sound quality and a fine brownish-red varnish. His son Pierre followed him into the trade.