Violin by

Charles Claude Francois Darche
Brussels, c.1850

Born in Mirecourt, France, in 1821, Charles Claude Francois Darche studied violin making in Belgium with Nicolas Francois Vuillaume, one of the leading makers of his day and younger brother of Jean Baptiste. Darche set up his own shop in Brussels in 1845 where he made new instruments and performed repairs and restorations.

Darche was exceptionally skilled. His workmanship was quite fine and comparable to the best Parisian makers, like J. B. Vuillaume. Examples of Darche’s making are rare, and we are fortunate to have this very fine violin built by him on a larger Stradivari model. Made circa 1850, it closely resembles the work of Vuillaume and creates a strong, husky tone. It is well preserved, featuring very fine materials and an excellent, rich varnish.