Violin Bow by Wilhelm August Pfretzschner, Markneukirchen, circa 1930

Violin Bow by  Wilhelm August Pfretzschner, Markneukirchen, circa 1930

About Wilhelm August Pfretzschner

The Pfretzschner family of Markneukirchen produced many bow makers. Wilhelm August was one of the most prolific of the family, having a large workshop and also buying in bows of lesser quality to be stamped and sold. A number of well-regarded bow makers trained with W.A. Pfretzschner, including his two sons Franz and Hans, as well as Max Kurt Schuster.

About the bow

This bow was made in Markneukirchen in the 1930s. It weighs 64 grams and the round stick measures 729 mm in length. The mounts are of rose gold and ebony. This example is very similar to the rose gold mounted bow on page 181 of the Deutsche Bogenmacher book which was picked as an example of some of the nicest work from the W.A. Pfretzschner workshop.

How does it play?

This bow is an unusual combination of being quite a strong stick but with a squidgy, relaxed feel to it. This lends the bow an enormous range of possible expression: I gravitate towards Brahms when playing this bow as there are so many colours to be found.


The bow is in good restored condition: the head has been repaired to fix some damage caused by removing the faceplate.

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