Due to the immense popularity of the Most Expensive Muscial Instrument – where I have posted the largest sum of money for a violin sold at auction as $2,032,000 for the “Lady Tennant” Stradivarius – I now bring you an update discovered while reading through Toby Faber’s book, Stradivari’s Genius: Five Violins, One Cello, and Three Centuries of Enduring Perfection.
According to Faber:
“One of the violins [on display at Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum] was made by Andrea Amati in 1564, part of a commission for Charles IX of France. It is the oldest surviving violin in the world, an exquisite piece of workmanship. The Civic Museum in Cremona has one from the same set [of thirty-eight string instruments commissioned by King Charles], but dated 1566, that was recently valued at $10 million” (pg. 5).
In addition to the 1564 Amati, the Ashmolean Museum also houses the “Messiah” Stradivarius:
“There it hangs, suspended in its case, visible from every angle, pristine, its varnish as flawless as when Stradivari applied the last few drops in 1716. It is in mint condition because this, the most famous violin in the world, template for countless copies, has hardly ever been played” (Faber 5).
It seems that even Stradvari was so enchanted with the sound that he wouldn’t sell it. (Faber 52)
But, $10 million for an Amati…! Now that’s expensive! $$$