The Hopf name is stamped on a vast number of undistinguished violins, an inestimable quantity of which are unauthentic. Any violin so marked should be viewed skeptically until confirmed by a recognized expert.
Dictionaries of violin makers list as many as eighteen makers by this name. The most celebrated among them are Caspar (1650-1711) and David (1762-86), both of whom lived in Klingenthal, Germany. While there are some minor variations amongst members of the Hopf family, all of them used the same design (dubbed the "Hopf model").
Prepared by the Division of Music, Sports and Entertainment
in cooperation with Public Inquiry Services, Smithsonian Institution