Pringle Viols

John Pringle
Stringed Instrument Maker
2218 Mount Willing Road
Efland, NC 27243
(919) 563-4118


English Consort Viols

The range of instruments offered here reflects my close affinity with a peculiarly rich aspect of my English heritage. The viols made in 16th and 17th century England were highly prized throughout Europe. I have examined many surviving examples and collected a vast amount of data, both technical and aesthetic, from which my own instruments derive more or less directly.


After JOHN ROSE, London c. 1580

SL 36.5cm

A fine consort leader with a full, sweet tone and even response from top to bottom.

After JOHN HOSKIN, 1609

SL 40.0cm

Copy of a larger original formerly in my possession. Perfect for lower pitch work, especially with all-gut bass strings.


After JOHN ROSE, London c. 1580

SL 55.5cm

A well proportioned tenor excellent for consort or lyra way.
After HENRY JAYE, London c. 1625

SL 45.5cm

Two instruments of this size by Jaye survive, so it must have had a function in English music making of the period.
Tuned in A or C this is either a high pitch tenor or an alto.

Small Basses

After JOHN ROSE, London 1598

SL 62.0cm

The catalog of the Ashmolean Museum, where the original instrument is preserved, describes it as a lyra viol, and it is certainly a good size for playing the lyra way.
After HENRY JAYE, London 1624 SL 68.5cm
The original, now in Paris, was converted to a seven-string, but it works much better with its original six!
After BARAK NORMAN, London 1696

SL 69.0cm

Norman made many instruments like this one, and so have I.
It is my most popular all purpose bass.

Mid-Size Basses

After JOHN ROSE, London 1580

SL 70.0cm

Only the body of this one survives, and as it is just a bit bigger than the Norman I give it a slightly longer string length.
After WILLIAM ADDISON, London 1670 SL 70.0cm
This is fine solo bass with plenty of sound. I make it, like the original, with a carved belly.

Consort Basses

After JOHN ROSE, London 1580

SL 74.0cm

This is the model for both the treble and tenor above. The simple but elegant original has clearly been very much played upon - always a good testimony to its worth as an instrument.
After HENRY JAYE, London 1619 SL 76.0cm
Jaye actually worked in a part of London called Southwark, and so did I. I also owned the stunning original for a time, so I feel intimately connected to this one. It is not an instrument for the faint-hearted or the small-fingered!