Pietro Guarneri of Mantua
(b. 18th February, 1655 ; d. 26th March, 1720)

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(Baptised: Pietro Giovanni Guarneri)[ Instrument list ]

Married 1) Caterina Sassagni, 1677, 2) Lucia Burani, 1694
( 6 children )

Synopsis of contents of Chapter II of The Violin Makers of the Guarneri family, Their Life and Work
  • Pietro Giovanni Guarneri, commonly known as Peter Guarnerius of Mantua.
  • Born February 1655, eldest son of Andrea Guarneri. Died March 1720.
  • Co-operated with his father 1670-8. Married 1677. Leaves his father's home 1679.
  • Departed for Mantua possibly prior to1685.
  • Was a cultivated musician playing both viol and violin.
  • Petitioned for appointment to Mantuan court. In due course was appointed.
  • Reason for his settling in Mantua.
  • Monteverdi, also Cremonese, had preceded Pietro in same capacity, Pietro occupying dual calling of maker and player.
  • Pietro and his brother Giuseppe agree as to division of their parents' estate.
  • Pietro the first-known violin-maker to be established at Mantua.
  • Rarity of his production.
  • Never made a viola or a violoncello.
  • Originality of his work. Analysis of tonal qualities of his instruments.
  • Comparison with that of Stainer.
  • Earliest works dating from Mantua about 1685. Examination of his work.
  • Ornamented certain of his instruments.
  • After 1700 broadened his style of work.
  • Made use of exceptionally fine material and varnish.
  • Endowed with true sense of beauty.
  • List of representative examples.
  • Finding of the certificate of the master's death.
  • Extract from census return in 1694 and following years.
  • Census return of 1718. Age of Master given.
  • Marriage of his daughter, October 1718.
  • Burial certificate of the master. Pietro's will.
  • Sale of a piece of land to the master for 1,000 ecus.
  • Pietro enters into agreement with the monks of S. Francisco di Paola, renouncing claim to property belonging to his son.
  • Marriage contract for master's daughter in1 1718.
  • No pupils left by the master.
  • Names of several makers inspired by him, Pietro the one distinguished Mantuan maker.
© W.E. Hill & Sons, London, 1965

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