Salve Håkedal, violin maker
A little on baroque form
The violin was a new instrument half a millennium ago. Few things as old as
that, has remained as unchanged as the violin. Many of us violinmakers even use
the same tools that we believe our colleagues used many hundred years ago!
The "baroque" neck and fingerboard had a different shape and angle:
In the 17-th century they did not play much in the higher positions. But when they did, the wedge shaped neck and fingerboard made coming down again easier... (There was no chinrests and shoulder pads then.)
The fingerboard was usually made of spruce, with ebony and maple veneer. That saved some expensive ebony, and also made the instrument a little lighter.
Strings were pure gut. The first wound strings was used a little before 1700, but only on the lowest strings. (G on the violin.) Gut E-strings can be tuned with the peg, so finetuners was not needed on the tailpiece.