Violin Identification - General Guidelines

Important Announcement: 2022 UNH Violin Craftmanship Institute will be held online.

The intent of this workshop is to teach the young and less experienced violin makers about the basis of what will be their stock-in-trade in the violin world – the 200-plus years of manufacture by the various commercial schools, which make up the overwhelming majority of violins in existence; how to distinguish them from one another; how to judge age and quality, and how to tell values – so that they can make sensible and informed judgements on how to handle them in future commerce.

A list of the tools and materials required for this course can be found in the Tools & Materials tab above, or by clicking here.

Register by May 31 and save!  $999 if registered by May 31, $1,099 afterward.

Tools & Materials


Violin Identification - General Guidelines

Violin Identification - General Guidelines

Instructor: Philip Kass

For Study:

Bring 1-2 instruments that you have identification questions about, and more if you have them.

Tools and Materials:

Item Notes
Notebook and Pencil and/or Pen

Essential for note taking

Tape Measure

6’/3m.  Both scales are useful.


Should be 8X to 10X. Sides should not obscure light.

Dental mirror

Bend-a-lite Or other means of illuminating instrument interiors
Not essential but useful:  
Straight Edge 6”/15 cm.

Dial Calipers


Hand-held UV lamp 



Instructor Bios


Violin Identification - General Guidelines

  • Philip J. Kass

    Philip J. Kass is a respected expert, appraiser, consultant and writer on fine classic stringed instruments and bows. From 1997 until 2002, he was an associate of William Moennig & Son, Ltd. of Philadelphia where he handled many of the world’s great stringed instruments. He was trained under William Moennig III, William Moennig Jr., and Dario D’Attili. Mr. Kass supplemented his education through his own independent travels, inquires and exploration. He is an acknowledged expert and author of many articles, speeches, auction reports and book reviews over a career spanning nearly three decades. Published work by Mr. Kass appears in many industry publications and professional venues. Many of these publications have been based on his independent research into English and French bow making and the violin makers of Piedmont, Cremona, and the Amati family. A member of the Violin Society of America since 1975, Mr. Kass has served on the Board of Directors in multiple leadership roles since 1985. Today, Mr. Kass is an independent expert working with clients out of Havertown, Pennsylvania.

09:00am - 05:00pm
Live Online
Philip Kass
999.00 PDT - Violin Institute
1099.00 PDT - Violin Institute