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of his ungrateful pupil, wished him to which he lived, and which showed a write on the titles of his early works, mind diametrically opposed to that of “pupil of Haydn,”-that although he re. Haydn. One cause of his remark that ceived some instructions from Haydn, he never learnt anything of Haydn, and yet he had never learnt anything of him. also of his continual sneers at him and This is easily to be believed, for two his music, may be found in the following minds more incongruous could scarcely anecdote, which shows the suspicion have been found, than the spiritual, pure, which marked his character even in early gentle, placid, and well-regi Haydn, life. His three trios, Op. 1., were to be and the wild, ungovernable, turgid Beet- brought forward at one of Prince Lichhoven. Their habits of life and of com- nowsky's soirées, to which all distinposition were as different as their mental guished musicians and amateurs had been organization, and were in perfect conso- invited, Haydn, of course, among them, nance with their characters. Haydn his judgment being anxiously and defernever wrote save when neatly dressed, entially expected. The Trios created and having on his hand a diamond ring great sensation, and Haydn himself given bim by his princely patron, and praised them to Beethoven, but advised always in one apartment, which was kept him not to publish the third, in C Minor. in order, and had a delightful exposure. He, thinking this the best, instead of supHis manuscript, too, was scrupulously posing that he might be in fault, or that neat, and very legible ; and as his patron Haydn might have been startled by the wished every day a new composition for novel style of the composition, immedithe bariton from him, he always produced ately thought that Haydn wished to sup. it. Beethoven, no matter what were his press it from envy and jealousy, and engagements, never composed, save when always after bore a grudge against him. he pleased, and his pleasure in the matter Beethoven, however, was right in his was most fitful; his manuscript was with judgment; it was the best Trio. He redifficulty read, even by those most fa- ceived but little instruction from Mozart, miliar with it, the notes being shapeless who, however, predicted his future things, dashed into the lines in apparent greatness. fury and recklessness. Life was too short, This suspicion, and want of confidence he said, to paint notes; yet Haydn wrote in those around, was continually causing much more than he did. His room, Sey- unhappiness to all of the few whom he fried thus describes :-" The most ex- allowed to come in contact with him. quisite confusion reigned in his house; On the slightest provocation, or without books and music were scattered in all din any, he would subject those to whom he rections; here the residue of a cold lunch was indebted for the greatest kindness, eon, there some full, some half-emptied not only to the most unjust and degrading bottles ; on the desk the hasty sketch of suspicions, but to the harshest and coarsest a new quartette ; in another corner the re- language, and afterward, when they could mains of breakfast; on the piano forte be of service to him again, make mean the scribbled hints for a noble Symphony, apologies, and eagerly avail himself of yet little more than in embryo; hard by their good offices. That surest index and a proof sheet, waiting to be returned ; let- most admirable attribute of a delicate ters from friends, and on business, spread mind and benevolent heart, consideration all over the floor; between the windows for the feelings of others, seemed utterly a goodly Stracchino cheese, and on one unknown to him. And yet it was not so side of it ample vestiges of a genuine from a want of proper instinct in the matVerona salai; and, notwithstanding this ter, for none sooner than himself felt or confusion, he constantly enlogised, with resented a wound to his self-love. The Ciceronian eloquence, his own neat- instinct was, with many others of like ness and love of order! When, however, nature, crushed beneath his idol, Self, the for whole hours, days, and often weeks, Juggernaut of his own happiness as well something mislaid was looked for, and as of the confort of those around him. all search had proved fruitless, then he Once, on a failure of one of his con. changed his tone, and bitterly complained certs, he suspected his tried friend Schin. that everything was done to annoy him.” dler of having cheated him, and soon after, If we add to this that he was constantly, at a dinner which he gave to a few friends, and for the most trivial causes, or rather he publicly and angrily accused him of whims, changing his lodgings, we shall the fraud. The two directors of his conobtain some idea of the confusion in cert who were present, in vain showed to
him that as the receipts had passed visited upon the offender. Sex, age, long through the bands of the two cashiers of friendship, nor relationship caused any the theatre, and their accounts exactly variation in the quality or quantity of his corresponded, a fraud was impossible, he revenge. Of his continual quarrels with as usual would not listen to reason, and his brother, one ended in blows, and the refused to retract his charge. And yet following anecdotes, ludicrous in them. this Schindler, who was his biographer, selves, show the undignified and violent and who relates this story, and also that manner in which his petty anger vented the friend of his youth, Hofrath von itself upon two menials, and one of them Brenning, was alienated from him by a an old and kind-hearted woman. They similar reflection on his honor, and that are related by Ries and Seyfried. Beethoven was only brought back to him “One day at the • Swan,' the waiter by certain melancholy events, which brought him the wrong dish. Beethoven caused him to stand in need of his assist- had no sooner uttered a few words of ance; and also that an accusation of reproof (to which the other retorted in no similar nature, occasioned a coolness of very polite manner), than he took the twelve years' standing between Beetho- dish, amply filled with the gravy of the ven and his old friend Dr. Malfatti; and stewed beef it contained, and threw it at who says, “ This may serve to show the waiter's head. Those who know the what it was to be Beethoven's friend, and dexterity of the Viennese waiters in to keep on good terms with him only a carrying, at one and the same time, num. single year-how much friendship, how berless plates full of different viands, will many sacrifices, what an entire self denial, conceive the distress of the poor man, did it not require to submit to be daily who could not move his arms, while the exposed to the most malicious calumnies, gravy trickled down his face. Both he and even to the most dishonorable accusa- and Beethoven swore and shouted, whilst tions !”--this man speaks of “his noble all the parties assembled roared with heart,” and of placing the “ moral man laughter. At last Beethoven himself above the composer.” Strange perversity! joined the chorus, on looking at the that will not see that suspicion, selfish- waiter, who was licking in with bis ness, and disregard of the happiness of tongue the stream of gravy which, much others, is inconsistent with nobility of as he fought against, bindered him from soul. Dog-like attachment! that will uttering any more invectives; the evolucaress and defend the hand which neg. tions of his tongue causing the most lects and abuses.
absurd grimaces." Frederika Bremer said well, that “one “Among his favorite dishes was bread of the noblest attributes of the soul is an soup, made in the manner of pap, in enlightened credulity.” It is the presence which he indulged every Thursday. To of that spirit in all that he wrote which compose this, ten eggs were set before is one of the elements of Shakspeare's him, which he tried before mixing with greatness. It was his love for, and faith the other ingredients; and if it unfortuin, his fellows which infused that touch nately happened that any of them were ing tenderness in Mozart's music which musty, a grand scene ensued; the offendmakes him loved, and it was the want of ing cook was summoned to the presence this noble attribute alone which pre- by a tremendous ejaculation. She, how. vented Beethoven from being the greatest ever, well knowing what might occur, of composers.
took care cautiously to stand on the In perfect keeping with the traits just threshold of the door, prepared to make a noticed was the free course he gave to his precipitate retreat; but the moment she tongue in severe remarks on all around made her appearance the attack comhim. His biographer says. He gave menced, and the broken eggs, like bombs expression to his feelings without any from well directed batteries, flew about reserve; and the propriety of repressing her ears, their yellow and white contents offensive remarks was a thing that never covering her with viscous streams.” entered his thoughts ;"_and this is men Veneration he had none, and his pride tioned as a proof of his candor, and conse was satanic. He affected to despise all quently of his nobleness of mind. distinctions of birth, rank and place, and
Irritable to excess, Beethoven put no yet throughout his whole life he showed greater restraint upon his anger than his the most eager desire for them. His sarcasm. No matter who offended him, democracy was of the sort which brought his wrath was instantly and forcibly all down to him, but raised none to him.
A suit having arisen between himself and answer, “ Ludwig von Beethoven, Brainhis sister-in-law, it was brought before a owner.” court of nobles, the “von” in his name be All his friends unite in saying that he ing supposed to be German, and therefore was constantly in love. His first love indicative of noble birth. But it being was M’lle Jeanette d'Honrath, of Cologne, suggested that it might be Dutch and of bis others no record has been kept. therefore conferring no distinction, the All unite in saying that his affections court asked him for proofs of his nobility. were always placed in the higher ranks. “ Here,” answered he, striking his fore- Perhaps this was the reason that he never head and his breast. The court, not married. But passionate as must have acknowledging this somewhat self-suffi- been the love of the composer of Adelaida, cient answer as proper proof of what no woman could have lived, save in they desired to know, sent the cause to misery, with Beethoven. an inferior court; at which Beethoven His religious creed, though he was was in a towering passion, considering it born and educated in the Roman Church, an insult.
But if all be equal, save was a vague sort of Deism, and was comthrough their own personal merits, as he prised in two inscriptions from the temple claimed, then he received no insult; and of Isis. These he had copied with his if all be not equal, then he did receive own hand, and they, for many years, lay justice.
constantly before him on' his writing. of a similar nature was his conduct table. They were :when, walking one day with Goethe, I. “I AM THAT WHICH ISMI AM ALL they met the royal train. Goethe, in THAT IS, ALL THAT WAS, AND ALL THAT respect to the chief magistrate of the
NO MORTAL HATH MY VEIL nation, took off his hat, but Beethoven UPLIFTED." crushed his down more firmly on his II. “HE IS ONE, SELF-EXISTENT, AND head, and stalking on in anger, rated TO THAT ONE ALL THINGS OWE THEIR EXGoethe roundly for his civility. Ries ISTENCE.” relates of him that being presented by These he regarded, says his biographer, Frederick William II. with a gold snuff as an epitome of the loftiest and purest box filled with louis-d'ors," he used to religion. Their cold uninfluencing docrelate with much complacency, that it was trine, if doctrine they can be said to have, no common box, but such as is given to seems about as near an approach to reambassadors.” And also that at a musical ligion as a mind like Beethoven's could soirée given by one of the nobility of make. Of his truly religious life, of Vienna, " at supper there was a table laid which his biographer speaks, no trace for the Prince and the highest nobility appears, save that he received the sacraalone, and no cover for Beethoven. He ment of extreme unction when on bis took fire, uttered some coarse expressions death-bed. Indeed, he whose religious and left the house. A few days later feeling was so small, that it required the Prince Louis gave a dinner party, 10 constant stimulus afforded by the sight of which the old Countess who had given so cold and speculative a creed as the the soirée was invited. On sitting down, one which he had always before him, places were assigned to the Countess on could not with reason be expected to have one, to Beethoven on the other side of that religious feeling give any tone to his the Prince, a distinction which he always life. And yet it is not at all surprising talked of with great pleasure.” The con- that he adopted no other belief. There duct of the Prince must appear to all is a mystery in the seeming simplicity of far more amiable as well as justly con
that which he avowed, a vagueness siderate of the merits of the guests, than which leaves so much for the imagi. that of the Countess; but there is a nation to fill in many ways, as it is afremarkable, though by no means strange, fected by the feelings, changing as they inconsistency between Beethoven's action do with time and circumstances, and an in the one case and the other, and his absence of anything which appeals to avowed sentiments. The same pride and aught but reason for its reception, or arrogance caused him, when his brother, which requires any humility in the reafter having become possessed of a cipient, which make it eminently fitted patrimony, signed a letter “ Johann von for the belief of a man without faith-and Beethoven, Land-owner,”—a usual thing such was Beethoven. in Germany,—to sneer at it, and sign bis His compositions, when they first ap
VOL. III.-NO. VI.
peared, startled the musical world from composers. This the very nature of his its propriety. All felt their power, but inspirations required. Had they been deyet they were called “the queerest stuff veloped in another way, they would not imaginable, "-"contrary to all rule.” have been Beethoven’s
. His works might Strange, indeed, they were. Nothing then have been pronounced unexception. like them had ever been heard or imagined able as to model, but they would have before, but their heresies against art were failed to stir those depths of feeling unon that very account magnified. Most of touched save by him; the unutterable his violations were rather of the imposed emotions which he alone has awakened formulas, than of essential spirit of art; would have yet been dormant; and, what though some were indeed radical, and was more to him, his own soul would though excusable in him are not imitable have had no utterance. Beethoven might with impunity by others. These ir as well have attempted 10 graduate the regularities he never allowed to be ques- eruptions of Vesuvius as to bind the extioned-his answers to such inquiries pression of his own emotions in the about his works being usually, It is forms given him by other minds. better thus.” But Ries, his pepil, spoke Fashion is, in its day and among its orce to him of two consecutive fifths in votaries, supreme in music as in everyone of his early quartetts, which, con. thing else, and it has lately been the trary to all previous experience, produced fashion to talk with an affectation of a harmonious effect. Beethoven for some learned enthusiasm upon Beethoven, but time could not believe that they were to listen to Donizetti. As those will fifths. But when Ries had proved him speak with rapture of Shakspeare who self right, by writing down the passage, hardly know the difference between Beethoven's reply was, “ Well, and who Hamlet and Pericles, Prince of Tyre, so forbids them ?". In his astonishment at it has been fashionable to speak of the question Ries did not answer, and Beethoven's “ depth of harmony" among Beethoven repeated the question several the large class who know nothing of times. At length Ries replied, “Why him but a few waltzes, some of which, it is one of the very first rules." Still though bearing his name, are decidedly Beethoven repeated his question, to which not his. Indeed, except among the proRies answered, “ Marpurg, Kirnberger, fessors of music, and the very small Fuchs-all theorists." “ Well, then, I number of well-educated amateurs, little permit them,” was the reply. The 'ra or nothing of his works has been known dicalism and assumption of this answer among us till within the last few years. will be more completely, comprehended But since the production of Fidelio at the by readers generally, when they know Park Theatre, the Mount of Olives by that consecutive fisths are as inadmis. the New York Sacred Music Society, the sable in music as consecutive negatives concerts of the German Society, and more or superlatives in English ; and that it is particularly since the establishment of as much a violation of musical grammar the Philharmonic Society, we have really to have one perfect fifth follow another, begun to know something of the wonin similar motion, save in certain situ- derful mind of this man. ations, as it is a violation of English Fidelio, though not equal as a compogrammar to say “not none,” or “most sition to the king of operas, Don Gio. best.” It was one thing for Beethoven vanni, surpasses it in the intensity of to say, that in this case he felt justified the expression of the passions it portrays. in using them, and quite another for him The difference in the character of the to say that they were admissable in clas. libretti is the chief cause of this. Beet. sic writing. As might have been ex- hoven has expressed with marvelous pected, Beethoven's example has been power, the tenderness, the agony, the followed by many who, of course, have despair and the happiness wbich the not his genius as their excuse; and it is situations of the opera awaken. From worthy of notice, that this is the only Leonora's first appearance, as she is left theoretical remark of Beethoven's of in Rocco's room to pour out unheard and which we have any record.
in solitude the agony of her soul, to the But it was more particularly in the time when she rests in Florestano's arms, forms of his thought, and the manner in the savior of her husband and the honwhich he worked out his ideas, that he ored of her sovereign, how full is every violated the rules observed by preceding note she utters of deep-felt, yearning af
fection. How awfully descriptive is the The first of these is sublime, and the instrumental music while Florestano lies second may be, but it is almost unsing. in exhausting slumber in the dungeon. able and altogether incomprehensible. We hear, but do not listen, to the groan- His symphonies which are the most gen. ing of the basses, the wailing of the vio- eral, are also the best means of becoming lins, and moaning of the horns, for Beet- acquainted with his style, for these are hoven has made the instruments not the channels of his greatest thoughts, suggestive of themselves, but a part of which here, preserving the purity and the scene which lies before us. And sweetness of their first spring, and swelled when the heart is depressed even to by knowledge, experience and self-religloom and despondency, hy the sadness ance, flow on in unequaled depth and which enters at eye and ear, the ema- majesty. In the fullness of his power just ciated prisoner wakes. At first, his notes at the time when the orchestra had are feeble and unconnected, but excited reached its richest combination of instruby the madness of his own imaginings, ments, he found in it a weapon fit for he pours out his terror and his love in his gigantic grasp, a voice capable of exsuch frenzied tones, that the heart beats pressing his big emotions. He writes a fitfully, and breathing is a care, till he Pastoral Symphony, a subject which drops exhausted on his stony coach. pale, interesting young gentlemen and And when the tyrant is baffled, and hus- sentimental young ladies connect with a band and wife stand once more united one-keyed flute, and walks into the fields amid the happy and wondering crowd, to write upon scraps of paper, ideas which how fiercely joyous is the final chorus. he will utter through the voices of an The exulting theme bursts now from army of instruments. And how beautione, now from another; the instruments fully does he cause them to tell their tale, are not mere accompainments, nor ad- making all from flute to double bass juncts, but each seems to have a voice, “babble of green fields.” How sunny and to pour its enlivening and boisterous and refreshing are the melodies, how injoy as if involuntarily. The crowd still spiriting the modulations; a blind man the expression of their own happiness to could hardly desire a better summer. He hear that of the reunited husband and brings before us a bright summer day: wife, whose glad tones now rise above and the rustling winds, and clear, deep the rest, so full of that calm, gushing, shadows of the woods induce calm revforth of tenderness from the heart, which erie and dreamy delight. He takes us to comes only from those who are supreme. the side of a rivulet, and a gentle murly happy, that we think they are about muring melody runs through the orchesto die away into eloquent stillness; but tra, till the ear is almost sated with they are again caught up by, and mingled its dreamy tones in “ linked sweetness with, a new burst from chorus and or- long drawn out.” The water ripples past chestra, which is the last and fullest ex- waving grass and yellow corn, the bee pression of exulting joy.
hums by, the breeze whispers in our ear, The Mount of Olives is matchless as and the nightingale, the cuckoo and the an expression of majestic wo, but has quail call from the rustling trees. He not the chaste gravity which the orato. shows us the peasants dancing on the rio demands. The last chorus, “ Halle- green ; we can see their vigorous steps lujah to the Father," is a noble piece of and hear the clatter of their wooden choral writing, and the gem of the com- shoes; the festivity becomes boisterous, position, but challenges a depreciating the music, so thoroughly rustic and excomparison with the Hallelujah Chorus citing in its character, accelerates in time of the Messiah.
till it seems as if both weary musicians But it is in his symphonies that most be- and panting dancers must give out, when come acquainted with Beethoven's music. all are driven to shelter by the terrific His chamber music is heard but among thunder-storm. The distant muttering the professors and the very small class of of the thunder and moaning of the wind, amateurs before alluded to, and his masses the heavy flash of the first huge drops of nowhere on this side of the Atlantic, and rain, the sudden burst of the hurricane, at rare times and places in Europe. In the vivid lightning flash, the bellowing deed he wrote bui two, one in C and one thunder, and the sheets of water which in D; though the score of another in sweep across the fields, are brought be. C Minor, claiming to be his, has been fore ihe mind's eye in all their terrific published, but on doubtful authority. reality. The storm passes off, the thun.