The Memory of the First World War Lives on in the “Wilfred Owen Violin”
2018-01-01 String Instrument News
To commemorate the 1914 outbreak of the First World War, Steve Burnet a luthier from Edinburgh created a violin named after Wilfred Owen. Wilfred Owen was famous for his poetry during wartime. He went into a war hospital in Craiglockhart to have a shell-shock treatment. It was during 1917 when it happened, and Owen was able to meet another famous poet, Siegfried Sassoon who was also having treatment in the same hospital. The place of the former war hospital in Craiglockhart had sycamore trees growing around it. The wood from these trees was used to create what was now known as the “Wilfred Owen Violin.”
It was Burnet’s longtime plan to create violins to honor the two great war poets, Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon. Burnet said that this is the perfect time to put the plans into fulfillment. It was indeed a unique instrument because of the pre-war poem inside the violin written by Owen with the inscription that says “Written in a Wood, September 1910.” It was indeed a poignant statement for such generation of their sacrifices because of the limb of the sycamore tree where the wood was taken, growing beside the beautiful copper beech tree growing in the land where the First World War hospital in Craiglockhart was once standing.
The newly created “Wilfred Owen Violin” will reside inside the Napier University’s Craiglockhart campus in its war poet’s collection area. This particular instrument was set for a tour on UK and other countries abroad and it was set to visit different schools for educational purposes and for symbolizing peace.