The Lady Blunt Stradivarius violin, made in 1721, has been sold for £9,808,000 at online auction house Tarisio. The sum is four times the previous auction record for a Stradivarius violin.
The instrument was sold by the Nippon Music Foundation of Japan and bought by a private bidder. All proceeds from the sale will go to the Nippon Foundation’s Northeastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund.
Named after its first known owner, the granddaughter of Lord Byron, the ‘Lady Blunt’ has set a record price each time it has been sold in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
‘The "Lady Blunt" is without doubt the best-preserved Stradivarius to come on the market in 40 years,’ said director of Tarisio, Jason Price. ‘This was truly a once-in-a-lifetime sale for everyone involved.’
The President of the Nippon Music Foundation, Ms Kazuko Shiomi said: ‘Each of the instruments in our collection is very dear to us. However, the extent of the devastation facing Japan is very serious and we feel that everyone and every organisation should make some sacrifice for those affected by this tragedy.’