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92/236 Violin, wood, made by Barak Norman, London, England, 1723. Click to enlarge.

Violin made by Barak Norman

Made by Norman, Barak in London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom, Europe, 1723.

This violin is significant as one the earliest violins made in England in the Powerhouse Museum’s collection. It is also made by one of England’s finest viol and violin makers during this early period, Barak Norman. Dated 1723 the instrument is a very late example of the work of Norman.

The instruments’ more recent provenance also makes it significant having belonged to Rudolph Dolmetsch one of the sons of Arnold Dolmetsch, who with his family greatly contributed to the revival of Early Music d...


Object No.


Object Statement

Violin, wood, made by Barak Norman, London, England, 1723

Physical Description

The violin back has a gentle bulge, round shoulders, F-shaped sound holes, fingerboard and tailpiece of dark timber. Tailpiece has tuning screw, neck and body of varnished wood, scroll head, bridge of light coloured wood for four strings, and four tuning pegs. Chin rest of dark timber attached to base of violin, button on base, double black purfling on edge of front and back of body.


Label reads; Barak Norman / at the sign of the Baf Viol / in St Paul's Church y: / London Fecit / 1723. (Year handwritten).

Bridge stamped: "AE Smith".



95 mm


250 mm



Barak Norman (1651-1724) made viols and violins in England for at least 34 years as estimated by Benjamin Hebbert (see Further Reading) and surviving examples of his work date from 1689 to 1723.

As a very late instrument by Norman it has been suggested that it may have elements of the work of Daniel Parker or Nathaniel Cross.



Formerly the property of Prof. Donald Peart [1909-1981], founder of the Music Department at the University of Sydney. Originally part of the collection of Arnold Dolmetsch, it was given by him to his son Rudolph on his 21st birthday. Rudolph Dolmetsch was killed in action during World War II in 1942. The violin was later sold to Professor Peart.


Credit Line

Purchased 1992

Acquisition Date

25 March 1992

Cite this Object


Violin made by Barak Norman 2019, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 16 October 2019, <>


{{cite web |url= |title=Violin made by Barak Norman |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=16 October 2019 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

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