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Chapter 2 - Biographical and Critical Narratives and Perspectives, 1811–1830

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 August 2023

Simon P. Keefe
Affiliation:
University of Sheffield
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Summary

Haydn and Mozart’s individual and collective critical reputations in the second and third decades of the nineteenth century were affected above all by the contents and orientations of a diverse range of writings and by Beethoven’s immense musical presence. With the immediacy of Haydn’s death receding and Mozart long gone, biographical work was able to build on foundations laid by distinguished writers such as Schlichtegroll, Niemetschek, Griesinger, and Dies in order both to feed an appetite for information about their lives and music and to demonstrate their continued relevance in a new era. In the process, similar and different perceptions of the two composers emerged, with biographical narratives stimulating explicitly fictional endeavours – where Haydn and Mozart were most readily able ‘to have, experience, exhibit, prove, live and perform … [their] selfhood’ in line with a key tenet of romanticism1 – as well as ostensibly factual endeavours.

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Chapter
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Haydn and Mozart in the Long Nineteenth Century
Parallel and Intersecting Patterns of Reception
, pp. 46 - 85
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2023

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