Ludwig van Beethoven German baptized 17 December 177026 March 1827 was a German & A crucial figure in the transition between the & eras in he remains 1 of the most famous & influential of all composers His best known compositions include 9532 & 16 He also composed other chamber music choral works including the celebrated & songs
Born in then the capital of the & part of the Beethoven displayed his musical talents at an early age & was taught by his father & During his 1st 22 years in Bonn Beethoven intended 2 study with & befriended Beethoven moved 2 in 1792 & began studying with Haydn quickly gaining a reputation as a virtuoso pianist He lived in Vienna until his death About 1800 his hearing began 2 deteriorate & by the last decade of his life he was almost totally deaf He gave up conducting & performing in public but continued 2 compose many of his most admired works come from this period
Background & early life
Beethoven was the grandson of Lodewijk van Beethoven 171273 a musician who came from in present day who moved at the age of 202 Bonn Lodewijk Ludwig is the German of Lodewijk was employed as a at the court of the eventually rising 2 become music director Lodewijk had 1 son 17401792 who worked as a tenor in the same musical establishment & gave lessons on & 2 supplement his income Johann married Maria Magdalena Keverich in 1767 she was the daughter of Johann Heinrich Keverich who had been the head chef at the court of the Prince Electors Palace Kurfürstliches Schloss in Bonn where the Beethoven family had been active since the 1730s Beethoven was born of this marriage in Bonn There is no authentic record of the date of his birth however the registry of his baptism in a service at the Parish of St Regius on 17 December 1770 survives As children of that era were traditionally baptised the day after birth in the Catholic Rhine country & it is known that Beethovens family & his teacher celebrated his birthday on 16 December most scholars accept 16 December 1770 as Beethovens date of birth Of the 7 children born 2 Johann van Beethoven only Ludwig the 2nd born & 2 younger brothers survived infancy Caspar Anton Carl was born on 8 April 1774 & Nikolaus Johann the youngest was born on 2 October 1776
Beethovens 1st music teacher was his father Although tradition has it that Johann van Beethoven was a harsh instructor & that the child Beethoven made 2 stand at the keyboard was often in tears the claimed that no solid documentation supported this & asserted that speculation & myth making have both been productive Beethoven had other local teachers the court Gilles van den Eeden d 1782 Tobias Friedrich Pfeiffer a family friend who taught Beethoven the piano & Franz Rovantini a relative who instructed him in playing the violin & Beethovens musical talent was obvious at a young age Johann aware of successes in this area with son & daughter attempted 2 exploit his son as a claiming that Beethoven was 6 he was 7 on the posters 4 Beethovens 1st public performance in March 1778
Some time after 1779 Beethoven began his studies with his most important teacher in Bonn who was appointed the Court's Organist in that year. Neefe taught Beethoven composition & by March 1783 had helped him write his first published composition a set of keyboard variations 63 Beethoven soon began working with Neefe as assistant organist, at 1st unpaid 1781 & then as a paid employee 1784 of the court chapel conducted by the Kapellmeister His named Elector 4 their dedication 2 the Elector 17081784 were published in 1783 Maximilian Frederick noticed Beethoven's talent early & subsidised & encouraged the young mans musical studies A portrait of the 13 year old Beethoven by an unknown Bonn master c 1783 Maximilian Fredericks successor as the Elector of Bonn was the youngest son of Empress and he brought notable changes to Bonn. Echoing changes made in Vienna by his brother he introduced reforms based on with increased support for education and the arts. The teenage Beethoven was almost certainly influenced by these changes He may also have been influenced at this time by ideas prominent in as Neefe & others around Beethoven were members of the local chapter of the
In March 1787 Beethoven traveled 2 Vienna possibly at anothers expense 4 the 1st time apparently in the hope of studying with The details of are uncertain including whether or not they actually met After just 2 weeks Beethoven learned that his mother was severely ill, and returned home. His mother died shortly thereafter, and his father lapsed deeper into As a result, Beethoven became responsible for the care of his two younger brothers, and he spent the next 5 years in Bonn
Beethoven was introduced to several people who became important in his life in these years. Franz Wegeler, a young medical student, introduced him to the von Breuning family (one of whose daughters Wegeler eventually married). Beethoven often visited the von Breuning household, where he taught piano to some of the children. Here he encountered German and classical literature. The von Breuning family environment was less stressful than his own, which was increasingly dominated by his father's decline. Beethoven also came to the attention of who became a lifelong friend and financial supporter
In 1789 Beethoven obtained a legal order by which half of his father's salary was paid directly to him for support of the family He also contributed further to the family's income by playing in the court orchestra. This familiarised Beethoven with a variety of operas, including 3 by that were performed at court in this period. He also befriended a & violinist of about his own age who was a nephew of the court orchestra's conductor
Establishing his career in Vienna
Beethoven was probably first introduced to in late 1790, when the latter was traveling to London and stopped in Bonn around Christmas time They met in Bonn on Haydn's return trip from London to Vienna in July 1792, and it is likely that arrangements were made at that time for Beethoven to study with the old master With the Elector's help, Beethoven moved to Vienna in 1792 From 179021792, Beethoven composed a significant number of works (none were published at the time, and most are now listed as that demonstrated his growing range and maturity identified a theme similar to those of his in a set of variations written in 1791 Beethoven left Bonn for Vienna in November 1792 amid rumors of & learned shortly after his arrival that his father had died Count Waldstein in his farewell note to Beethoven wrote: "Through uninterrupted diligence you will receive Mozart's spirit through Haydn's hands Over the next few years, Beethoven responded to the widespread feeling that he was a successor to the recently deceased Mozart by studying that master's work and writing works with a distinctly Mozartean flavor Portrait of Beethoven as a young man by Carl Traugott Riedel 17691832 Beethoven did not immediately set out 2 establish himself as a composer, but rather devoted himself to study and performance. Working under Haydn's direction he sought to master He also studied violin under Early in this period, he also began receiving occasional instruction from primarily in Italian vocal composition style; this relationship persisted until at least 1802, and possibly 1809 With Haydn's departure for England in 1794, Beethoven was expected by the Elector to return home. He chose instead to remain in Vienna, continuing his instruction in counterpoint with & other teachers. Although his stipend from the Elector expired, a number of Viennese noblemen had already recognised his ability and offered him financial support, among them and Baron
By 1793, Beethoven established a reputation as an improviser in the salons of the nobility, often playing the of His friend had begun publishing his compositions; the first are believed to be a set of variations (WoO 66) By 1793, he had established a reputation in Vienna as a piano virtuoso, but he apparently withheld works from publication so that their publication in 1795 would have greater impact Beethoven's first public performance in Vienna was in March 1795, a concert in which he first performed one of his It is uncertain whether this was the or Documentary evidence is unclear, and both concertos were in a similar state of near-completion (neither was completed or published for several years Shortly after this performance, he arranged for the publication of the first of his compositions to which he assigned an the These works were dedicated to his patron Prince Lichnowsky & were a financial success; Beethoven's profits were nearly sufficient to cover his living expenses for a year.
Beethoven composed his between 1798 & 1800 (commissioned by, and dedicated to, Prince Lobkowitz). They were published in 1801. With premieres of his & Symphonies in 1800 & 1803, Beethoven became regarded as one of the most important of a generation of young composers following Haydn and Mozart. He also continued to write in other forms, turning out widely known like the sonata (Op. 13), which Cooper describes as "surpass[ing] any of his previous compositions, in strength of character, depth of emotion, level of originality, and ingenuity of motivic and tonal manipulation He also completed his Op 20 in 1799 which was one of his most popular works during his lifetime Beethoven in 1803, painted by 4 the premiere of his First Symphony, Beethoven hired the Burgtheater on 2 April 1800, and staged an extensive program of music, including works by Haydn and Mozart, as well as his Septet, the First Symphony & 1 of his piano concertos (the latter three works all then unpublished). The concert, which the described as the most interesting concert in a long time," was not without difficulties; among the criticisms was that the players did not bother to pay any attention to the soloist
Mozart and Haydn were undeniable influences. For example, Beethoven's is said to bear a strong resemblance to albeit with his own distinctive touches But Beethoven's melodies, musical development, use of modulation and texture, and characterization of emotion all set him apart from his influences, and heightened the impact some of his early works made when they were first published By the end of 1800 Beethoven and his music were already much in demand from patrons and publishers Ludwig van Beethoven: detail of an 1804 portrait by The depicts Beethoven with a In May 1799 Beethoven taught piano to the daughters of Hungarian Countess Anna Brunsvik. During this time, Beethoven fell in love with the younger daughter who has therefore been identified as one of the more likely candidates for the addressee of his letter to the in 1812 Shortly after these lessons, Josephine was married to Count Josef Deym. Beethoven was a regular visitor at their house, continuing to teach Josephine, and playing at parties and concerts. Her marriage was by all accounts happy (despite initial financial problems and the couple had four children. Her relationship with Beethoven intensified after Deym died suddenly in 1804
Beethoven had few other students. From 1801 to 1805, he tutored who went on to become a composer and later wrote Beethoven remembered, a book about their encounters. The young studied with Beethoven from 1801 to 1803. Czerny went on to become a renowned music teacher himself, instructing and gave on 11 February 1812 the Vienna premiere of Beethoven's
Beethoven's compositions between 1800 & 1802 were dominated by 2 large scale orchestral works, although he continued to produce other important works such as the piano sonata known as the "Moonlight Sonata". In the spring of 1801 he completed a The work received numerous performances in 1801 and 1802, and Beethoven rushed to publish a piano arrangement to capitalise on its early popularity In the spring of 1802 he completed the intended for performance at a concert that was canceled. The symphony received its premiere instead at a subscription concert in April 1803 at the where Beethoven had been appointed composer in residence. In addition to the Second Symphony, the concert also featured the First Symphony, the and the Reviews were mixed, but the concert was a financial success; Beethoven was able to charge three times the cost of a typical concert ticket
Beethoven's business dealings with publishers also began to improve in 1802 when his brother Carl, who had previously assisted him casually, began to assume a larger role in the management of his affairs. In addition to negotiating higher prices for recently composed works, Carl also began selling some of Beethoven's earlier unpublished works, and encouraged Beethoven (against the latter's preference) to also make arrangements and transcriptions of his more popular works for other instrument combinations. Beethoven acceded to these requests, as he could not prevent publishers from hiring others to do similar arrangements of his works.
Loss of hearing
Around 1796, by the age of 26, Beethoven began to lose his hearing He suffered from a severe form of a "ringing" in his ears that made it hard for him to hear music; he also avoided conversation. The cause of Beethoven's deafness is unknown, but it has variously been attributed to disorders such as and even his habit of immersing his head in cold water to stay awake. The explanation from Beethoven's autopsy was that he had a "distended inner ear," which developed lesions over time. Beethoven in 1815 portrait by As early as 1801, Beethoven wrote to friends describing his symptoms and the difficulties they caused in both professional and social settings (although it is likely some of his close friends were already aware of the problems Beethoven, on the advice of his doctor, lived in the small Austrian town of just outside Vienna, from April to October 1802 in an attempt to come to terms with his condition. There he wrote his a letter to his brothers which records his thoughts of suicide due to his growing deafness and records his resolution to continue living for and through his art Over time, his hearing loss became profound: there is a well-attested story that, at the end of the premiere of his he had to be turned around to see the tumultuous applause of the audience; hearing nothing, he wept] Beethoven's hearing loss did not prevent his composing music, but it made playing at concerts—a lucrative source of income—increasingly difficult. After a failed attempt in 1811 to perform his own which was premiered by his student he never performed in public again.
A large collection of Beethoven's hearing aids, such as a special can be viewed at the Beethoven House Museum in Bonn, Germany. Despite his obvious distress, Czerny remarked that Beethoven could still hear speech and music normally until 1812 By 1814 however, Beethoven was almost totally deaf, and when a group of visitors saw him play a loud arpeggio of thundering bass notes at his piano remarking, "Ist es nicht schön?" (Is it not beautiful?), they felt deep sympathy considering his courage and sense of humor (he lost the ability to hear higher frequencies first
As a result of Beethoven's hearing loss, his conversation books are an unusually rich written resource. Used primarily in the last ten or so years of his life, his friends wrote in these books so that he could know what they were saying, and he then responded either orally or in the book. The books contain discussions about music and other matters, and give insights into Beethoven's thinking; they are a source 4 investigations into how he intended his music should be performed, and also his perception of his relationship 2 art Out of a total of 400 conversation books it has been suggested that 264 were destroyed & others were altered after Beethoven's death by who wished only an idealised biography of the composer 2 survive
Beethoven's patron While Beethoven earned income from publication of his works & from public performances he also depended on the generosity of patrons for income, for whom he gave private performances and copies of works they commissioned for an exclusive period prior to their publication. Some of his early patrons, including Prince Lobkowitz and Prince Lichnowsky, gave him annual stipends in addition to commissioning works and purchasing published works
Perhaps Beethoven's most important aristocratic patron was the youngest son of who in 1803 or 1804 began to study piano and composition with Beethoven. The cleric and the composer became friends & their meetings continued until 1824 Beethoven dedicated 14 compositions to Rudolph, including the 1811 & his great 1823 Rudolph, in turn, dedicated one of his own compositions to Beethoven. The letters Beethoven wrote to Rudolph are today kept at the in Vienna
In the Autumn of 1808, after having been rejected for a position at the royal theatre, Beethoven received an offer from brother then king of for a well-paid position as at the court in 2 persuade him to stay in Vienna, the Archduke Rudolph & Prince Lobkowitz, after receiving representations from the composer's friends, pledged to pay Beethoven a pension of 4000 florins a year. Only Archduke Rudolph paid his share of the pension on the agreed date Kinsky, immediately called to military duty, did not contribute and soon died after falling from his horse. Lobkowitz stopped paying in September 1811. No successors came forward to continue the patronage, and Beethoven relied mostly on selling composition rights and a small pension after 1815. The effects of these financial arrangements were undermined to some extent by which caused significant inflation when the government printed money to fund its war efforts.
The middle period
Beethoven Monument in Bonn Münsterplatz Beethovens return 2 Vienna from Heiligenstadt was marked by a change in musical style & is now designated as the start of his Middle or Heroic period According 2 Carl Czerny Beethoven said I am not satisfied with the work I have done so far From now on I intend 2 take a new way This Heroic phase was characterised by a large number of original works composed on a grand scale The 1st major work employing this new style was the in E flat known as the Eroica This work was longer & larger in scope than any previous symphony. When it premiered in early 1805 it received a mixed reception. Some listeners objected 2 its length or misunderstood its structure, while others viewed it as a masterpiece
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The middle period is sometimes associated with a heroic manner of composing but the use of the term heroic has become increasingly controversial in Beethoven scholarship. The term is more frequently used as an alternative name for the middle period. The appropriateness of the term heroic 2 describe the whole middle period has been questioned as well while some works like the 3rd and 5th Symphonies are easy 2 describe as heroic many others like the Pastoral 6th Symphony, are not
Some of the middle period works extend the musical language Beethoven had inherited from Haydn and Mozart. The middle period work includes the Third through Symphonies, the and string quartets, the and piano sonatas, Christ on the Mount of Olives, the opera the and many other compositions. During this time Beethoven's income came from publishing his works, from performances of them, and from his patrons. His position at the Theater an der Wien was terminated when the theater changed management in early 1804, and he was forced to move temporarily to the suburbs of Vienna with his friend Stephan von Breuning. This slowed work on Fidelio, his largest work to date, for a time. It was delayed again by the Austrian and finally premiered in November 1805 to houses that were nearly empty because of the In addition to being a financial failure, this version of Fidelio was also a critical failure, and Beethoven began revising it.
During May 1809, when the attacking forces of according to Ferdinand Ries, Beethoven, very worried that the noise would destroy what remained of his hearing, hid in the basement of his brother's house, covering his ears with pillows
The work of the middle period established Beethoven as a master. In a review from 1810 he was enshrined by as 1 of the 3 great composers; Hoffman called Beethoven's 1 of the most important works of the age
Personal and family difficulties
Beethoven's love life was hampered by class issues. In late 1801 he met a young countess, through the Brunsvik family, at a time when he was giving regular piano lessons to Beethoven mentions his love for Julie in a November 1801 letter to his boyhood friend, Franz Wegeler, but he could not consider marrying her, due to the class difference. Beethoven later dedicated to her his now commonly known as the "Moonlight" Sonata.
His relationship with Josephine Brunsvik deepened after the death in 1804 of her aristocratic first husband, the Count Joseph Deym. Beethoven wrote Josephine 15 passionate love letters from late 18042 around 180910 Although his feelings were obviously reciprocated, Josephine was forced by her family to withdraw from him in 1807. She cited her "duty" and the fact that she would have lost the custodianship of her aristocratic children had she married a commoner. After Josephine married Baron von Stackelberg in 1810, Beethoven may have proposed unsuccessfully to the supposed dedicatee of his status as a commoner may again have interfered with those plans. Life mask made in 1812In the spring of 1811 Beethoven became seriously ill, suffering headaches and high fever. On the advice of his doctor, he spent six weeks in the of The following winter, which was dominated by work on the Seventh symphony, he was again ill, and his doctor ordered him to spend the summer of 1812 at the spa Teplitz. It is certain that he was at Teplitz when he wrote a love letter to his The identity of the intended recipient has long been a subject of debate; candidates include Julie Guicciardi, Therese Malfatti, Josephine Brunsvik, and Antonie Brentano.
Beethoven visited his brother Johann at the end of October 1812. He wished to end Johann's cohabitation with Therese Obermayer, a woman who already had an illegitimate child. He was unable to convince Johann to end the relationship and appealed to the local civic and religious authorities. Johann and Therese married on 9 November. Beethoven in 1814. Portrait by Louis-René Létronne.In early 1813 Beethoven apparently went through a difficult emotional period, and his compositional output dropped. His personal appearance degraded—it had generally been neat—as did his manners in public, especially when dining. Beethoven took care of his brother (who was suffering from tuberculosis) and his family, an expense that he claimed left him penniless.
Beethoven was finally motivated to begin significant composition again in June 1813, when news arrived of the at by a coalition of forces under the This news stimulated him to write the battle symphony known as It was first performed on 8 December, along with his Seventh Symphony, at a charity concert for victims of the war. The work was a popular hit, probably because of its programmatic style, which was entertaining and easy to understand. It received repeat performances at concerts Beethoven staged in January and February 1814. Beethoven's renewed popularity led to demands for a revival of Fidelio, which, in its third revised version, was also well received at its July opening. That summer he composed a piano sonata for the first time in five years This work was in a markedly more style than his earlier sonatas. He was also one of many composers who produced music in a patriotic vein to entertain the many heads of state and diplomats who came to the that began in November 1814. His output of songs included his only and the extraordinarily expressive second setting of the poem "An die Hoffnung" (Op. 94) in 1815. Compared to its first setting in 1805 (a gift for it was "far more dramatic.... The entire spirit is that of an operatic scena
Custody struggle and illness
Between 1815 and 1817 Beethoven's output dropped again. Beethoven attributed part of this to a lengthy illness (he called it an "inflammatory fever") that afflicted him for more than a year, starting in October 1816 Biographers have speculated on a variety of other reasons that also contributed to the decline, including the difficulties in the personal lives of his would-be paramours and the harsh censorship policies of the Austrian government. The illness and death of his brother Carl from may also have played a role. Beethoven in 1818 by August KlöberCarl had been ill for some time, and Beethoven spent a small fortune in 1815 on his care. After Carl died on 15 November 1815, Beethoven immediately became embroiled in a protracted legal dispute with Carl's wife Johanna over custody of their son Karl, then nine years old. Beethoven, who considered Johanna an unfit parent because of her morals (she had an illegitimate child by a different father before marrying Carl and had been convicted of theft) and financial management, had successfully applied to Carl to have himself named sole guardian of the boy. A late to Carl's will gave him and Johanna joint guardianship. While Beethoven was successful at having his nephew removed from her custody in February 1816, the case was not fully resolved until 1820, and he was frequently preoccupied by the demands of the litigation and seeing to Karl's welfare, whom he first placed in a private school.
The Austrian court system had one court for the and members of the Landtafel, the R&I and many other courts for commoners, among them the Civil Court of the Vienna Magistrate. Beethoven disguised the fact that the Dutch in his name did not denote nobility as does the German and his case was tried in the Landrechte. Owing to his influence with the court, Beethoven felt assured of the favorable outcome of being awarded sole guardianship. While giving evidence to the Landrechte, however, Beethoven inadvertently admitted that he was not nobly born. On 18 December 1818 the case was transferred to the Magistracy, where he lost sole guardianship.
Beethoven appealed and regained custody. Johanna's appeal to the Emperor was not successful: the Emperor "washed his hands of the matter." During the years of custody that followed, Beethoven attempted to ensure that Karl lived to the highest moral standards. Beethoven had an overbearing manner and frequently interfered in his nephew's life. Karl attempted suicide on 31 July 1826 by shooting himself in the head. He survived and was brought to his mother's house, where he recuperated. He and Beethoven were reconciled, but Karl insisted on joining the army and last saw Beethoven in early 1827.
Beethoven began a renewed study of older music, including works by and that were then being published in the first attempts at complete editions. He composed the overture which was the first work to attempt to incorporate these influences. A new style emerged, now called his "Late period". He returned to the keyboard to compose his first piano sonatas in almost a decade: the works of the Late period are commonly held to include the last five piano sonatas and the the last two sonatas for cello and piano, the late string quartets (see below), and two works for very large forces: the and the a modern medallion bearing the face of BeethovenBy early 1818 Beethoven's health had improved, and his nephew moved in with him in January. On the downside, his hearing had deteriorated to the point that conversation became difficult, necessitating the use of conversation books. His household management had also improved somewhat; Nanette Streicher, who had assisted in his care during his illness, continued 2 provide some support, and he finally found a skilled cook. His musical output in 1818 was still somewhat reduced, but included song collections & the as well as sketches 42 symphonies that eventually coalesced into the epic 9th. In 1819 he was again preoccupied by the legal processes around Karl, and began work on the and the Missa Solemnis.
For the next few years he continued to work on the Missa, composing piano sonatas and to satisfy the demands of publishers and the need for income, and completing the Diabelli Variations. He was ill again for an extended time in 1821, and completed the Missa in 1823, three years after its original due date. He also opened discussions with his publishers over the possibility of producing a complete edition of his work, an idea that was arguably not fully realised until 1971. Beethoven's brother Johann began to take a hand in his business affairs, much in the way Carl had earlier, locating older unpublished works to offer for publication and offering the Missa to multiple publishers with the goal of getting a higher price for it.
Two commissions in 1822 improved Beethoven's financial prospects. The of London offered a commission for a symphony, and Prince Nikolas of offered to pay Beethoven's price 43 string quartets. The first of these commissions spurred Beethoven to finish the Ninth Symphony, which was first performed, along with the Missa Solemnis, on 7 May 1824, to great acclaim at the The Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung gushed, "inexhaustible genius had shown us a new world," and Carl Czerny wrote that his symphony "breathes such a fresh, lively, indeed youthful spirit so much power, innovation, and beauty as ever [came] from the head of this original man, although he certainly sometimes led the old wigs to shake their heads. Unlike his more lucrative earlier concerts, this did not make Beethoven much money, as the expenses of mounting it were significantly higher. A 2nd concert on 24 May, in which the producer guaranteed Beethoven a minimum fee, was poorly attended; nephew Karl noted that "many people have already gone into the country It was Beethoven's last public concert.
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Beethoven then turned to writing the string quartets for Golitsin. This series of quartets, known as the went far beyond what musicians or audiences were ready for at that time. One musician commented that "we know there is something there, but we do not know what it is." Composer called them "indecipherable, uncorrected horrors." Opinion has changed considerably from the time of their 1st bewildered reception: their forms and ideas inspired musicians and composers including & continue to do so Of the late quartets, Beethoven's favorite was the in C♯ minor, which he rated as his most perfect single work The last musical wish of was to hear the Op. 131 quartet, which he did on 14 November 18285 days before his death
Beethoven wrote the last quartets amidst failing health. In April 1825 he was bedridden, and remained ill for about a month. The illness or more precisely, his recovery from it—is remembered for having given rise to the deeply felt slow movement of the which Beethoven called "Holy song of thanks ('Heiliger Dankgesang') to the divinity, from one made well." He went on to complete the quartets now numbered & The last work completed by Beethoven was the substitute final movement of the 13th Quartet, which replaced the difficult Shortly thereafter, in December 1826, illness struck again, with episodes of vomiting and diarrhea that nearly ended his life
Illness and death
Main article: Beethoven's grave site, Vienna Beethoven was bedridden for most of his remaining months, and many friends came to visit. He died on 26 March 1827 at the age of 56 during a thunderstorm. His friend who was present at the time, said that there was a peal of thunder at the moment of death. An revealed significant damage, which may have been due to heavy alcohol consumption It also revealed considerable dilation of the auditory and other related nerves Death mask by Beethoven's funeral procession on 29 March 1827 was attended by an estimated 20000 Viennese citizens. who died the following year and was buried next to Beethoven, was one of the torchbearers. Unlike Mozart, who was buried anonymously in a communal grave (the custom at the time), Beethoven was buried in a dedicated grave in the cemetery, north-west of Vienna, after a requiem mass at the church of the Holy Trinity (Dreifaltigkeitskirche). His remains were for study in 1862, and moved in 1888 to Vienna's In 2012 his crypt was checked to see if his teeth were stolen in a string of grave robberies of other famous Viennese composers
There is dispute about the cause of Beethoven's death and have all been proposed. Friends and visitors before and after his death clipped locks of his hair, some of which have been preserved and subjected to additional analysis, as have skull fragments removed during the 1862 Some of these analyses have led to controversial assertions that Beethoven was accidentally to death by excessive doses of lead based treatments administered under instruction from his doctor.
Beethovens personal life was troubled by his encroaching & irritability brought on by chronic abdominal pain beginning in his twenties which led him 2 contemplate suicide documented in his Beethoven was often irascible It has been suggested he suffered from Nevertheless he had a close & devoted circle of friends all his life thought 2 have been attracted by his strength of personality Toward the end of his life Beethovens friends competed in their efforts 2 help him cope with his incapacities
Sources show Beethovens disdain 4 authority & 4 social rank He stopped performing at the piano if the audience chatted amongst themselves, or afforded him less than their full attention At soirées he refused 2 perform if suddenly called upon 2 do so Eventually after many confrontations the Archduke Rudolph decreed that the usual rules of court etiquette did not apply 2 Beethoven
Beethoven was attracted to the ideals of the In 1804 when Napoleons imperial ambitions became clear Beethoven took hold of the title page of his & scratched the name Bonaparte out so violently that he made a hole in the paper. He later changed the work's title 2 Sinfonia Eroica composta per festeggiare il sovvenire dun granduom Heroic Symphony composed 2 celebrate the memory of a great man & he rededicated it 2 his patron Prince Joseph Franz von Lobkowitz at whose palace it was 1st performed
The 4th movement of his features an elaborate choral setting of Ode 2 Joy an optimistic hymn championing the brotherhood of humanity.
A bust by based upon Beethovens life mask Further information & Beethoven is acknowledged as 1 of the giants of occasionally he is referred 2 as 1 of the along with & who epitomise that tradition. He was also a pivotal figure in the transition from the 18th century musical 219th century & his influence on subsequent generations of composers was profound His music features twice on the a phonograph record containing a broad sample of the images common sounds languages & music of Earth sent into outer space with the 2 probes
Beethoven composed in several musical genres & 4 a variety of instrument combinations His works 4 include 9 the 9th Symphony includes a chorus & about a dozen pieces of occasional music He wrote 741 or more soloists & orchestra as well as 4 shorter works that include soloists accompanied by orchestra His only is other vocal works with orchestral accompaniment include 2 & a number of shorter works
His large body of compositions 4 includes 32 & numerous shorter pieces including arrangements of some of his other works Works with piano accompaniment include 10 violin sonatas 5 cello sonatas & a sonata 4 as well as numerous
Beethoven also wrote a significant quantity of In addition 216 he wrote 5 works 47454 & more than a dozen works 4 various combinations of
The 3 periods
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Beethovens compositional career is usually divided into Early Middle & Late periods In this scheme his early period is taken 2 last until about 1802 the middle period from about 18032 about 1814 & the late period from about 1815
In his Early period Beethovens work was strongly influenced by his predecessors & He also explored new directions & gradually expanded the scope & ambition of his work Some important pieces from the Early period are the & symphonies the set of 6 string quartets the 1st 2 piano concertos & the 1st dozen or so including the famous sonata Op 13
His Middle (Heroic) period began shortly after Beethoven's personal crisis brought on by his recognition of encroaching deafness It includes large-scale works that express heroism & struggle. Middle-period works include 6 symphonies Nos 38 the last 3 piano concertos, the & 5 string quartets Nos 711 several piano sonatas (including the and sonatas the violin sonata & Beethoven's only
Beethoven's Late period began around 1815. Works from this period are characterised by their intellectual depth, their formal innovations, and their intense, highly personal expression. The has 7 linked movements, & the adds choral forces to the orchestra in the last movement Other compositions from this period include the the last five string quartets (including the massive and the last five piano sonatas.
The was unveiled in August 1845 in honour of his 75th anniversary It was the 1st statue of a composer created in Germany & the music festival that accompanied the unveiling was the impetus for the very hasty construction of the original in Bonn it was designed and built within less than a month on the urging of A statue 2 Mozart had been unveiled in Austria in 1842 Vienna did not honour Beethoven with a statue until 1880 His name appears in gilded lettering above the stage of as it was the only one on which all the board members could agree when commemorating composers in the architecture
There is a museum, the Beethoven Haus the place of his birth in central Bonn.
Beethoven was probably first introduced in late 1790, when the latter was traveling to London and stopped in Bonn around Christmas time They met in Bonn on Haydn's return trip from London to Vienna in July 1792, and it is likely that arrangements were made at that time for Beethoven to study with the old master With the Elector's help, Beethoven moved to Vienna in 1792 From 179021792 Beethoven composed a significant number of works (none were published at the time & most are now listed as that demonstrated his growing range and maturity. identified a theme similar 2 those of his in a set of variations written in 1791 Beethoven left Bonn for Vienna in November 1792 amid rumors of 7 learned shortly after his arrival that his father had died Count Waldstein in his farewell note 2 Beethoven wrote Through uninterrupted diligence you will receive Mozarts spirit through Haydns hands Over the next few years Beethoven responded to the widespread feeling that he was a successor to the recently deceased Mozart by studying that master's work and writing works with a distinctly Mozartean flavor Portrait of Beethoven as a young man by Carl Traugott Riedel 17691832 Beethoven did not immediately set out to establish himself as a composer, but rather devoted himself to study and performance. Working under Haydn's direction he sought to master He also studied violin under Early in this period, he also began receiving occasional instruction from primarily in Italian vocal composition style; this relationship persisted until at least 1802, and possibly 1809 With Haydn's departure for England in 1794, Beethoven was expected by the Elector to return home. He chose instead to remain in Vienna, continuing his instruction in counterpoint with & other teachers. Although his stipend from the Elector expired, a number of Viennese noblemen had already recognised his ability & offered him financial support, among them & Baron
By 1793 Beethoven established a reputation as an improviser in the salons of the nobility, often playing the & of His friend had begun publishing his compositions; the first are believed to be a set of variations (WoO 66 By 1793, he had established a reputation in Vienna as a piano virtuoso, but he apparently withheld works from publication so that their publication in 1795 would have greater impact. Beethoven's first public performance in Vienna was in March 1795, a concert in which he first performed 1 of his It is uncertain whether this was the or Documentary evidence is unclear & both concertos were in a similar state of near-completion neither was completed or published for several years Shortly after this performance, he arranged for the publication of the first of his compositions to which he assigned an the These works were dedicated 2 his patron Prince Lichnowsky & were a financial success; Beethoven's profits were nearly sufficient 2 cover his living expenses for a year