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date: 14 November 2019

Collin-Mézin, Charles Jean-Baptiste locked

  • Jaak Liivoja-Lorius
  • , revised by Philip J. Kass


(b Mirecourt, France, Nov 12, 1841; d Paris, France, 1923). French violin maker. He apprenticed with his father, Claude-Nicolas, in Mirecourt before working for Nicolas-François Vuillaume in Brussels. In 1868 he established himself in Paris and enjoyed a considerable reputation during his lifetime, his instruments being used by many distinguished musicians. He was named an officer of the Academy in 1884 and received awards for his work at the expositions of 1878, 1879, 1889, and 1900. He appears to have been one of the first to advocate the use of metal A and E strings for violins.

The craftsmanship of Collin-Mezin’s instruments is extremely well carried out, almost to the point of mechanical precision. Most of his output follows the now familiar Mirecourt Stradivari model, loosely based on the ‘Messie’ violin but generally covered with a gold to gold-brown varnish of variable quality. Collin-Mezin invariably used printed labels which were dated in ink across one end; further, the interior back behind the soundpost was autographed. His son and successor, Charles Jean-Baptiste Jr (...

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