German Composer and Pianist
Ludwig van Beethoven
German Composer and Pianist
It is no comfort for men of the better sort to say to them that others also suffer; but, alas! comparisons must always be made, though they only teach that we all suffer, that is err, only in different ways.
Let your conduct always be amiable; through art and science the best and noblest of men are bound together and your future vocation will not exclude you.
Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy. Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents.
My thoughts go out to you, my Immortal Beloved I can only live wholly with you or not at all. Be calm my life, my all. Only by calm consideration of our existence can we achieve our purpose to live together. Oh continue to love me, never misjudge the most faithful heart of your beloved. Ever Thine. Ever Mine. Ever Yours.
O God! send your glance into beautiful nature and comfort your moody thoughts touching that which must be.
Perfect the ear trumpets as far as possible, and then travel; this you owe to yourself, to mankind and to the Almighty! Only thus can you develop all that is still locked within you;?and a little court,?a little chapel,?writing the music and having it performed to the glory of the Almighty, the Eternal, the Infinite?-
Rossini would have been a great composer if his teacher had spanked him enough on the backside.
The boundaries are not yet fixed which shall call out to talent and industry: thus far and no further!
The texts which you sent me are least of all fitted for song. The description of a picture belongs to the field of painting; in this the poet can count himself more fortunate than my muse for his territory is not so restricted as mine in this respect, though mine, on the other hand, extends into other regions, and my dominion is not easily reached.
There is no loftier mission than to approach the Divinity nearer than other men, and to disseminate the divine rays among mankind.
To write true church music, look through the old monkish chorals, etc., also the most correct translations of the periods, and perfect prosody in the Catholic Psalms and hymns generally.
What you are, you are by accident of birth; what I am, I am by myself. There are and will be a thousand princes; there is only one Beethoven. [Beethoven speaking to royalty]
Without wishing in the least to set myself up as an exemplar I assure you that I lived in a small and insignificant place, and made out of myself nearly all that I was there and am here;?this to your comfort in case you feel the need of making progress in art.
Your love makes me at once the happiest and the unhappiest of men. At my age I need a certain uniformity and equableness of life; can such exist in our relationship?
It is not my custom to prattle away my purposes, since every intention once betrayed is no longer one's own.
Like the State, each man must have his own constitution.
Music is a revelation; a revelation loftier than all wisdom and all philosophy.
Nature is a glorious school for the heart! It is well; I shall be a scholar in this school and bring an eager heart to her instruction. Here I shall learn wisdom, the only wisdom that is free from disgust; here I shall learn to know God and find a foretaste of heaven in His knowledge. Among these occupations my earthly days shall flow peacefully along until I am accepted into that world where I shall no longer be a student, but a knower of wisdom.
O God! What glory in the Woodland. On the Heights is Peace,-- Peace to serve Him--
Perhaps the only thing that looks like genius about me is that my affairs are not always in the best of order, and that in this respect nobody can be of help but myself.
Say all conceivable pretty things to Cherubini,?that there is nothing I so ardently desire as that we should soon get another opera from him, and that of all our contemporaries I have the highest regard for him.
The daily grind exhausts me.
The thing which my brother can have from me is 1, a Septett per il Violino, Viola, Violoncello, Contrabasso, Clarinetto, Cornto, Fagotto, tutti obligati; for I cannot write anything that is not obligato, having come into the world with obligato accompaniment.
There is no other capacity for dominance but goodness.
To your gentlemen critics I recommend a little more foresight and shrewdness, particularly in respect of the products of younger authors, as many a one, who might otherwise make progress, may be frightened off. So far as I am concerned I am far from thinking myself so perfect as not to be able to endure faulting; yet at the beginning the clamor of your critic was so debasing that I could scarcely discuss the matter when I compared myself with others, but had to remain quiet and think: they do not understand. I was the more able to remain quiet when I recalled how men were praised who signify little among those who know, and who have almost disappeared despite their good points. Well, pax vobiscum, peace to them and me,?I would never have mentioned a syllable had you not begun.