ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Violin

Updated on September 7, 2013
The true mission of the violin is to imitate the accents of the human voice, a noble mission that has earned for the violin the glory of being called the king of instruments. Charles-Auguste de Beriot (1802-70)
The true mission of the violin is to imitate the accents of the human voice, a noble mission that has earned for the violin the glory of being called the king of instruments. Charles-Auguste de Beriot (1802-70)

The violin is one of the best loved of all musical instruments. The beauty of its shape is matched by a beauty of tone. The violin is a member of the family of stringed instruments. It is capable of a wide range of musical expressions; the sound of the violin can be almost as varied and as moving as the human voice.

Anyone who is asked to make a list of musical instruments will no doubt place the violin close to the top. Its clear tones are familiar to everyone and its versatility has given the violin its place as leader of the orchestra.

It is a symbol of romance in countries of the Mediterranean, where violin players serenade young lovers at café tables. The violin is also an instrument to dance to. Almost all traditional country dances rely on the accompaniment of the fiddle. In Medieval times, minstrels with stringed instruments were a familiar sight.

Violin is one of the most expressive instruments and is used by composers to evoke moods. A wide range of effects can be achieved from a variety of playing techniques.

  • The familiar mellow sound is made by simply drawing the bow across the strings creating an atmosphere of serenity and stillness.
  • Sometimes the sound can be so pure that it resembles the soprano voice of a choirboy. By contrast scraping the bow across the strings in abrupt jerky movements gives a harsh, angry sound and is often used to portray storms or violent events.
  • The trembling effect used for sad music is obtained by sliding the fingers along the strings, whereas the short,snappy sounds used to conjure up lighter moods come from plucking the strings. This technique can create an impression of dancing or raindrops.

In recent years, the violin has become a feature of modern popular and jazz music; many rock and pop artists have abandoned synthesizers in favour of orchestral arrangements for massed violins to create a softer effect.

How the Violin Works

Sound is produced from strings by bowing or plucking. This makes the air inside the body of the instrument vibrateand amplify the sound. This is called "resonance".

Four strings are stretched from the bottom of the instrument, over a raised'bridge' and held in position by pegs at the end of the finger board. The violin is tuned by twisting thsese pegs to slacken or tighten the strings.

High and low notes depend on the size thickness and tension of the string. The shorter, thinner and more taut it is, the higher the note it produces.

How strings are made?

All violin strings used to be made from sheep or even cat gut. Then it was discovered that winding aluminum or silver thread round the gut meant that strings could be made stronger and thinner.

Now nylon or plastic is often used instead of gut for the central core and the strings are wound with aluminum or copper wire. the material from which the string is made affects the quality of the sound it produce.

Fact File

  • The highest price ever paid for a violin was £820,000 in November 1990 for a Stradivarius made in 1720.
  • Until the late18th century the violin was held against the chest not under the chin.
  • Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741) was one of the most important and prolific composers for the violin. He lived in Venice and entered the priesthood at age 15. Vivaldi wrote nearly 400 concertos for the violin. A concerto is a composition for a solo instrument and orchestra. Vivaldi's most famous work is "The Four Seasons" a set of four concertos one for each season of the year.


The variety of musical effects possible on the violin makes it one of the most popular of all musical instruments.

All over the world you will find people playing violins or similar kinds of musical instruments. The versatility of the violin makes it suitable for playing many different styles of music.

Violin Lessons : Vibrato Techniques for Beginner Violinists

Violin Vibrato: SLOW MOTION: Dos and Don'ts

Do You Play the Violin?

See results

Sarah Chang plays Bruch - 3rd Movement


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • nbhumble profile image


      4 years ago from Staffs, UK

      An update on violin prices. The most expensive violin ever sold is now the 1741 Guarneri del Gesu violin that is known as the Vieuxtemps-Stoutzker, which sold in January 2013 for a figure that is believed to be in excess of $18 million. The identity of the buyer has not been revealed but it is known that lifetime use of the violin has been granted to Anne Akiko Meyers. The previous highest price was for the 'Lady Blunt' Stradivari violin of 1721, which was sold at auction in 2011 with the proceeds going to the Japanese Tsunami Relief Appeal for $14.1 million. How prices have soared since the 1990 value referred to in this hub.

    • profile image

      acoustic violin 

      7 years ago

      Learning any instrument will It take a lot of practice. For me playing violin is so much fun!

    • MM Del Rosario profile imageAUTHOR

      MM Del Rosario 

      9 years ago from NSW, Australia

      Hi Michelle, thanks for dropping by, same here I wish I could play the violin, but never too old to learn it......I like your new photo...MM

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 

      9 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      I love listening to the violin MM. :) Wish I could play it too...


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)