German Composer and Pianist
Ludwig van Beethoven
German Composer and Pianist
It is difficult to find a good poem. Grillparzer has promised to write one for me,?indeed, he has already written one; but we cannot understand each other. I want something entirely different than he.
Kings and Princes can create professors and counselors, and confer orders and decorations; but they cannot create great men, spirits that rise above the earthly rabble; these they cannot create, and therefore they are to be respected.
Most people are touched by anything good; but they do not partake of the artist's nature; artists are ardent, they do not weep.
My miserable hearing does not trouble me here. In the country it seems as if every tree said to me: 'Holy! holy!' Who can give complete expression to the ecstasy of the woods! O, the sweet stillness of the woods!
Not Brook but Ocean should be his name.
Only the praise of one who has enjoyed praise can give pleasure.
Rest assured that you are dealing with a true artist who likes to be paid decently, it is true, but who loves his own reputation and also the fame of his art; who is never satisfied with himself and who strives continually to make even greater progress in his art.
The bad habit, which has clung to me from childhood, of always writing down a musical thought which occurs to me, good or bad, has often been harmful to me.
The poet writes his monologue or dialogue in a certain, continuous rhythm, but the elocutionist in order to insure an understanding of the sense of the lines, must make pauses and interruptions at places where the poet was not permitted to indicate it by punctuation. The same manner of declamation can be applied to music, and admits of modification only according to the number of performers.
There is much good in Spontini; he understands theatrical effect and martial noises admirably. Spohr is so rich in dissonances; pleasure in his music is marred by his chromatic melody. His name ought not to be Bach (brook), but Ocean, because of his infinite and inexhaustible wealth of tonal combinations and harmonies. Bach is the ideal of an organist.
Though still in bed, my thoughts go out to you, my Immortal Beloved, now and then joyfully, then sadly, waiting to learn whether or not fate will hear us... Yes, I am resolved to wander so long away from you until I can fly to your arms and say that I am really at home with you, and can send my soul enwrapped in you into the land of spirits... No one else can ever possess my heart - never - never - Oh God, why must one be parted from one whom one so loves ... Your love makes me at once the happiest and the unhappiest of men... My angel, I have just been told that the mailcoach goes every day - therefore I must close at once so that you may receive the letter at once... Be calm - love me - today - yesterday - what tearful longings for you - you - you - my life - my all - farewell. Oh continue to love me - never misjudge the most faithful heart of your beloved. Ever thine, Ever mine, Ever ours.
Were it not that my income brings in nothing, I should compose nothing but grand symphonies, church music, or, at the outside, quartets in addition.
Why so many dishes? Man is certainly very little higher than the other animals if his chief delights are those of the table.
You will ask me where I get my ideas. That I cannot tell you with certainty; they come unsummoned, directly, indirectly,?I could seize them with my hands,?out in the open air; in the woods; while walking; in the silence of the nights; early in the morning; incited by moods, which are translated by the poet into words, by me into tones that sound, and roar and storm about me until I have set them down in notes.
It is man's habit to hold his fellow man in esteem because he committed no greater errors. Belief on their part that you are wiser than they...Without tears fathers cannot inculcate virtue in their children, or teachers learning and wisdom in their pupils; even the laws, by compelling tears from the citizens, compel them also to strive for justice.
L'art unit tout le monde,?how much more the true artist!
Music - The one incorporeal entrance into the higher world of knowledge which comprehends mankind but which mankind cannot comprehend.
My misfortune is doubly painful to me because it will result in my being misunderstood. For me there can be no recreation in the company of others, no intelligent conversation, no exchange of information with peers; only the most pressing needs can make me venture into society. I am obliged to live like an outcast.
Nothing but art, cut to form like old-fashioned hoop-skirts. I never feel entirely well except when I am among scenes of unspoiled nature.
Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.
Rigorists, and devotees of antiquity, relegate the perfect fourth to the list of dissonances. Tastes differ. To my ear it gives not the least offence combined with other tones.
The barriers are not erected which can say to aspiring talents and industry, 'Thus far and no farther.'
The portraits of Handel, Bach, Gluck, Mozart and Haydn in my room,?they may help me to make claim on toleration.
There is much on earth to be done,?do it soon! I must not continue my present everyday life,?art asks this sacrifice also. Take rest in diversion in order to work more energetically.
Thus Fate knocks at the portals!