Men, men, men, men
Posted by Jessamyn on January 03, 1998 at 20:38:07:
In response to Accomplished women and the major violin concertos, written by Hilary on January 03, 1998 at 15:06:36
] I know that "accomplished" ladies were supposed to know how to play the pianoforte and/or the harp. But what about other instruments (mainly, the violin)? Were they only for men who had to make a living by playing them?
By the time that Jane Austen was writing her books, many major violin concertos had been written: the Bachs, Mozarts, even the Beethoven, to begin with.
So my question is: who was playing these things?
Violins were definitely not as ladylike as harps or pianofortes. By a long shot. Violins were flashy performance instruments (tacky, like acting) or dance accompaniments (you wouldn't want to be confused with a lowly dancing-master!). It really isn't until the very late 19th century that you start seeing paintings of ladies holding violins, and not until the turn of this century that professional female violinists began to appear in concert.
For more information on violins in the Regency, you might want to check out this earlier thread. The lower-down entries offer several pictures.
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