Amati family

Italian family of celebrated violinmakers, who lived and worked at Cremona in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries. Very few of his instruments are to be found, those preserved being of a small pattern, with beautiful wood and amber colored varnish and of a very graceful outline. Nicolo, his younger brother, made excellent bass viols and his two sons, Antonio and Geronimo, produced violins larger than their father's and greatly improved upon his model. The work of these brothers was very important in the development of the violin. The most noted of the six famous Amati was Geronimo's son, Nicolo, who lived from 1596 to 1684. In the main, he kept to the Amati model in making his violins, but he made many improvements, his proportions being better, his outlines more graceful and the thickness of the wood being better calculated, his instruments thus gaining greatly in power and intensity of tone. Most of his instruments were small, but he made some large violins, called Grand Amatis. These are very high priced. Andrea Guarnieri and Antonio Stradivari were his pupils. Geronimo, his son, the last of the Amatis, was an inferior maker and did nothing to increase the fame of the family.