Page last updated at 12:12 GMT, Friday, 28 March 2008

Rare violin may sell for 750,000

The violin is thought to date from the 1700s

A rare Stradivari violin owned by musician Barbara Penny is expected to fetch as much as $1.5m (750,000) at auction in New York.

Penny, who died last year, was the first woman accepted in the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra strings section.

The 18th Century violin is named The Penny after her and will go on sale at Christie's auction house on 4 April.

In 2006, a 1729 Stradivari violin known as the Hammer sold at Christie's for $3.5m (1.75m).

Iconic violins

"This one has an especially good balance between the brightness and the sweetness," said Jesus Reina, a violinist from the Manhattan School of Music.

Antonio Stradivari is considered to be the most distinguished craftsman of the instrument.

He made over 1,000 violins, violas and violoncellos, and was commissioned by King James II of England and King Charles III of Spain.

It is believed that only about 650 of his instruments survive.

Stradivari violin fetches $2.73m
03 Apr 07 |  Entertainment
Stradivarius tops auction record
17 May 06 |  Entertainment

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