Strohviol violin, circa 1900

Strohviol instruments, in which the conventional string bridge and acoustic resonant cavity are replaced by connecting the bridge directly to a metal diaphragm and a saxophone-like horn, were introduced in the late 1890's.  They were used in the early days of recording when volume was at a premium.  Despite the complete lack of a violin body in the usual sense, this early Strohviol violin sounds remarkably like a violin.  Early Stroh instruments, such as this example, were made of Aluminum (which became available in quantity in the 1890's).  Later instruments were made of brass.  This model has two horns, the smaller one so that the player could hear himself play.

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