Birth : 1801 in Sommervillers (Meurthe et Moselle)) Death : 1859 in Lyon (Rhône)


  The son of a secular monk from Luneville who became a teacher during the Revolution, Pierre SILVESTRE began his apprenticeship under Laurent BLAISE (Blaise-Mast) in Mirecourt when he was seventeen years old.
 Upon completion of his apprenticeship, Pierre joined the workshop of LUPOT in Paris as a collaborator. After LUPOT's death in 1824, he joined the workshop of GAND Pere.
In 1829, he moved to Lyon to open up his own workshop.
In 1831, his brother Hippolyte (1808-1879) left the shop of J B Vuillaume to join Pierre in Lyon and be his collaborator. This period sees instruments made under the label Pierre et Hippolyte SILVESTRE and lasted until 1848 when Hippolyte retired. 

Upon Pierre's death in 1859, Hippolyte returned to Lyon to take over the management of this great firm and remained until 1865, when he retired for good. After a short transition when the firm was run by PICHON, Hippolyte was succeeded by his nephew Hippolyte Chretien (HC).


Pierre made approximately 350 instruments, mainly violins and cellos using Stradivari models. These instruments are coated with a soft varnish of very fine quality.
  Albert JACQUOT is the first to tell us that  "Pierre himself gained the reputation of highly talented violin maker and that his instruments are more sought after than his brother's, as far as sonority, varnish, and delicacy of the workmanship is concerned " (Jacquot A. 1985)


1829-1831 Place des Terreaux. Lyon. (Schmitt J.F. 1996)

Honors & awards

1844. Exposition Nationale. Paris. Médaille de Bronze. (Schmitt J.F. 1996)
1855. Exposition Universelle. Paris. Mention Honorable. (Haine M. 2008)

Collaborators & Successors

DEROUX Sébastien Auguste from 1866 à 1869 (Vidal A. 1889)
BRUGÈRE François (Stainer C. 1896)
SILVESTRE Hippolyte Chrétien1865 à 1884 (Successor)

Chronology of  Maison Silvestre in Lyon
1829 - 1831 Pierre Silvestre
1831 - 1848 Pierre & Hippolyte Silvestre
1848 - 1859 Pierre Silvestre
1859 - 1865 Hippolyte Silvestre
1865 - 1865 PICHON For a short period
1865 - 1884  Hippolyte Chrétien Silvestre  (HC)


Complete publications references are available in our Bibliography section.




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