Approximately 249 years from the birth of Beethoven

Approximately 249 years from the birth of Beethoven

On December 16, 1770, in Cologne, Germany, Ludwig van Beethoven, composer, and pianist, was born, an important figure in the transition between the classical and romantic ages of music, which remains one amongst the foremost illustrious and influential of all composers.

His most popular works are 9 symphonies, 5 piano concerts, 32 sonatas, and 16 quartets, as well as chamber music, choral works, and songs.

Beethoven went to Vienna in 1792, studied music, and soon gained a reputation as a virtuoso pianist. In Boston, in 1947, Fan Noli published the monograph "Beethoven and the French Revolution" defending the argument that the French Revolution and Republican ideas had a profound influence on Beethoven's music.


Noli, known as a Republican and anti-monarchist, says Beethoven's weakest compositions are those created in Vienna during the imperial period, when he composed a contract for princes and emperors, purely for money.

Biographers say Beethoven was drawn to the ideals of the Enlightenment. In 1804, when Napoleon's imperial ambitions became clear, Beethoven deleted the words of devotion to Bonaparte from the third symphony; later he changed the title (Heroic Symphony to Celebrate the Memory of a Great Man) and reassigned it to his patron, Prince Joseph Franz von Lobkowitz, in whose palace the third symphony was first performed.

Beethoven lived in Vienna until his death (1827). In the last decade of his life, he became almost completely deaf, retired from public life, but continued to compose. Critics say many of his most admired works come from this period under the imperial influence.

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