Treble Viol

Cabroly Italian (active France)

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 684

Instruments of the violin and viol families appeared at about the same period but followed separate paths of development and differ in design and performance technique. Viols feature flat backs, sloping shoulders, six or seven strings, and fingerboards with movable frets, Viols are played in an upright position between the knees, or da gamba, and the bow is held palm upward. Violins flourished in both small and large ensembles, becoming the backbone of the orchestra. Because of their softer volume, viols particularly suited small ensembles and more intimate performance spaces.

Treble Viol, Cabroly (Italian (active France), Toulouse, France, active ca. 1730–1749), Wood, French

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