Obviously, we can’t give you an instrument appraisal over the phone, but we can give you a few tips on what to look for to see if a violin (or viola or cello or bass) might be nice and worth keeping.
Keep in mind that these tips are just tips and not surefire answers to replace an in person evaluation.
The overall pattern for the instrument was set in the 17th century by luthiers like the prolific Amati family, Jakob Stainer of the Tyrol, and Antonio Stradivari, with many makers at the time and since following their templates. 911) of the 9th century, was the first to cite the bowed Byzantine lira as a typical instrument of the Byzantines and equivalent to the rabāb used in the Islamic Empires of that time.
The Byzantine lira spread through Europe westward and in the 11th and 12th centuries European writers use the terms fiddle and lira interchangeably when referring to bowed instruments (Encyclopædia Britannica. In the meantime rabāb was introduced to the Western Europe possibly through the Iberian Peninsula and both bowed instruments spread widely throughout Europe giving birth to various European bowed instruments.
We’ve heard all about it because it seems to have happened to everyone; you’ve just inherited a violin from your fiddler grandfather, and you want to know if the instrument is valuable or if it should just be left at the curb.
Around 650 instruments survive, including 450 to 512 violins.Antonio Stradivari's birthdate, presumably between 16, has been debated amongst historians due to the numerous inconsistencies in the evidence of the latter.The 16 censuses report him actually growing younger, a fact explained by the probable loss of statistics from 1647–49, when renewed belligerency between France's Modenese and Spain's Milanese proxies led to a flow of refugees that included Stradivari's mother.Things to Examine: *Purfling -- Purfling is the (usually) black and neutral decorative inlay around the edge of the violin and is usually the most obvious giveaway of a cheap instrument.Purfling is tedious to put in, so if it is missing or painted on, the instrument is probably not very valuable.