Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 1.djvu/220

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208
BEETHOVEN.
 

March 26, 1832)—144 pages, containing biographical sketch, anecdotes and traits, letters (included in Nohl), three conversations, the sale catalogue, the music sung at the funeral, poems and addresses, a catalogue of Beethoven's works, etc.

(2) Wegeler and Ries, 'Biographische Notizen,' etc. (Coblenz, 1838), with 'Nachtrag' by Wegeler alone (Coblenz, 1845). Contains biography, letters, and a host of anecdotes.

(3) Schindler, 'Biographie' (Münster, 1840). This is the first edition of Schindler's work, which was translated into English by Moscheles, and published with many additions and modifications, and with no mention of Schindler on the title page, in 2 vols. 8vo. (Colburn, 1841). It was followed by 'Beethoven in Paris' (Münster, 1842), an account of the performance of some of the symphonies by the 'Societé des Concerts,' with various documents of interest; by a second edition of the Biography (Münster, 1845); and finally by a third edition in two volumes (Münster, 1860). This last has been very inaccurately translated into French by Sowinski (Paris, Garnier, 1865).

(4) Gerhard von Breuning, 'Aus dem Schwarzspanierhaus' (Vienna, 1874)—the recollections of Stephen von Breuning's son, who was 11 years old when Beethoven died, and was much with him during the last years of his life.

III. Smaller and more fragmentary notices are given of him—in 1798 or 99 by Czerny, in Pohl's 'Jahresbericht des Konservatorium … in Wien' (Vienna, 1870); and in later years by the same in Cocks's 'Musical Miscellany' (London, July and Aug. 1852, Jan. 1853); in 1809 by Reichardt in 'Vertraute Briefe' (Amsterdam, 1810); in 1814 by Spohr in his 'Selbstbiographie' (Cassel, 1860), and by Tomaschek in 'Libussa' for 1846; in 1822 by Rochlitz in the A. M. Z., 1828, p. 10, printed in 'Für Freunde der Tonkunst,' vol. iv. p. 348 (Leipzig, 1832); in 1824 [by Mr. Edward Schulz] in the 'Harmonicon,' Jan. 1824; and [by Mrs. Payne, Dr. Burney's niece,] in the 'Harmonicon' Dec. 1825; in 1825 by Rellstab in 'Aus meinem Leben,' ii. 224.

Of later biographies must be mentioned that of M. Fétis in his 'Biographie universelle des Musiciens'; of Wilhelm von Lenz, 'Beethoven, eine Kunst-Studie,' a Life, with an extended critical and historical catalogue of the works; and of Herr Ludwig Nohl, 'Beethovens Leben,' of which the 3rd and last volume was published in Sept. 1876. Nohl is said to be inaccurate, and he is certainly diffuse, but I for one owe him a debt of gratitude for his various publications, the information in which can be found nowhere else. The notes to the biography contain a mass of materials of the greatest interest. Last and best is the 'Ludwig van Beethovens Leben ' of A. W. Thayer (Berlin, 1866, 72), of which the 3rd vol. is on the eve of publication, and which, through the caution, wide research, and unflagging industry of its author has already taken a place far higher than any of its predecessors. Amongst other sources of information Mr. Thayer has inherited the memoranda collected by the late Otto Jahn, who had himself made some progress in a biography of Beethoven. The corrections which this able investigator has made in many most material points, and the light thrown by him on passages hitherto more than obscure, can only be appreciated by those who read his work.

IV. Of more miscellaneous works the following must be named:—W. von Lenz, 'Beethoven et ses trois Styles' (Petersburg, 1852; also Paris, Lavinée, 1855)—a book which, if full of rhapsody, is also full of knowledge, insight, and enthusiasm; Oulibicheff, 'Beethoven, ses critiques et ses glossateurs,' in direct antagonism to the foregoing (Paris, 1857); Berlioz, 'Etude analytique des Symphonies de Beethoven' in his 'Voyage musical,' vol. i. (Paris, 1844); Otto Jahn, three papers in his 'Gesammelte Aufsätze' (Leipzig, 1866), viz. 'Leonore oder Fidelio,' 'B. im Malkasten,' and 'B. und die Ausgaben seiner Werke' ; R. Wagner, 'Beethoven' (Leipzig, 1870); Marx, 'B.'s Leben und Schaffen, 3rd edition (Berlin, 1875); Actenmässige Darstellung der Ausgrabung und Wiederbeisetzung der irdischen Reste von Beethoven und Schubert (Vienna, 1863); Nohl, 'Beethovens Brevier' (Leipzig, 1870), a collection of passages in his favourite authors extracted or marked by Beethoven; 'Die Beethoven Feier' (Vienna, 1871), containing amongst other things Beethoven's diary from 1812 to 1818. The analytical programmes of Beethoven's sonatas by Mr. J. W. Davison, prepared to accompany Mr. Charles Hallés performance in 1861, are full of interest.

V. We now arrive at another class of works of more importance than any yet mentioned, except perhaps the letters, and absolutely indispensable to those who wish to investigate Beethoven's music chronologically, viz. the catalogues, and reprints of the sketch-books.

Catalogues of Beethoven's works were attempted by Artaria, Hofmeister, and Cranz, but the first one worthy of the subject was issued by Breitkopf & Härtel in 1851—'Thematisches Verzeichniss,' etc., large 8vo., 167 pp. The second edition of this, edited and enriched with copious notes, remarks, appendices, indexes, etc. by Mr. G. Nottebohm (Leipzig, 1868, pp. 1–220), leaves little to be desired. It is arranged in the order of the opus numbers of the pieces—where they are numbered—that is to say, in the order of publication. A catalogue from a different point of view in the order of the production of the works, and embracing those unpublished as well as published, was issued by Mr. Thayer, as a precursor, or mémoire pour servir, to his 'Biography,' viz. 'Chronologisches Verzeichniss,' etc. (Berlin, 1865). It is difficult to over-estimate the value of this unpretending list, which contains a vast amount of information not only before inaccessible, but unknown to students. It was followed by a work of equal interest—'Ein Skizzenbuch von B.,' etc., the reprint of one of Beethoven's sketch-books, with such commentary as is necessary fully to elucidate it.