A scholarly teacher and composer for the violin was the German Ludwig Spohr (1784-1859), who was born the same year as the wizard Paganini, and who, although having less scintillant genius than the weird Italian, is believed to have had a more beneficent influence over violin playing in his treatment of the instrument. He set an example of purity of style and roundness of tone, and raised the violin concerto to its present dignity. His violin school is a standard work.
From the beginning of the nineteenth century to the present time the lists of excellent violinists have rapidly increased and heights of technical skill have been reached by many that would have dazzled early violin masters. The special tendencies of gifted leaders have divided players into defined schools. Among noted exponents of the French school may be mentioned Alard and his pupil Sarasate, Dancla and Sauret. Charles August de Beriot (1802-1870) was the actual founder of the Belgian school whose famous members include the names of Vieuxtemps, Leonard, Wieniawski, Thomson and Ysaye. Ferdinand David (1810-1873), first head of the violin department at the Leipsic Conservatory, gave impulse to the German school. Among his famous pupils are Dr. Joseph Joachim, known as one of the musical giants of the nineteenth century; August Wilhelmj, the favorite of Wagner, and Carl Gaertner, who, with his violin has done so much to cultivate a taste for classical music in Philadelphia. Among the many lady violinists who have attained a high degree of excellence are Madame Norman Neruda, now Lady Halle, Teresina Tua, Camilla Urso, Geraldine Morgan, Maud Powell and Leonora Jackson.
The only violinist whose memory was ever honored with public monuments was Ole Bull (1810-1880), who has been called the Paganini of the North. Two statues of him have been unveiled by his countrymen, one in his native city, Bergen, Norway, and one in Minneapolis, Minnesota. These tributes have been paid not so much to the violinist who swayed the emotions of an audience and who could sing a melody on his instrument into the hearts of his hearers, as to the patriot, the man who turned the eyes of the world to his sturdy little fatherland, and who gave the strongest impulse for everything it has accomplished in the past half century in art and in literature. Another patriot violinist was the Hungarian Eduard Remenyi (1830-1898), who first introduced Johannes Brahms to Liszt, and should always be remembered as the discoverer of Brahms.
The great demand of the day in the violin field, as in that of other musical instruments, is for dazzling pyrotechnic feats. It has perhaps reached its climax in the young Bohemian Jan Kubelik, whose playing has been pronounced technically stupendous. In the mad rush for advanced technique, the soul of music it is meant to convey is, alas, too often forgotten.
[Illustration: Jenny Lind]