Charles François Langonet came to London in 1880 to become foreman of the workshop at W.E. Hill & Sons, after which his son Charles Frank followed. Most of his violin making work was directly for Hills, but violins occasionally come to light with his label inside them, of which this is an example.
In 1925 the Hills acquired “The King” Guarneri del Gesù of 1735, in their opinion one of the greatest examples by the maker, and it is from this instrument that Langonet’s copy is derived. In this case it would probably be going too far to describe it as a ‘bench copy’ of “The King” but the level of precision and articulation of del Gesù’s design style is remarkable for twentieth century making. Overall a superb example of great British making with first-rate quality of sound.