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In the ‘Twilight Zone’: Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Trio in F Minor

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 January 2020


Although it has long been known that Beethoven began composing a piano trio in F minor in 1816, scholarly examination of the extant sources for this unfinished project has only recently progressed beyond Nottebohm's brief remarks in the 1880s. The present article reveals the existence of numerous new sources evidently unknown to Nottebohm, including a leaf which forms the continuation of the draft score (Concept) of the first movement, the principal source for the trio. (Transcriptions of this score, including the new continuation, and of a newly identified draft which preceded it, accompany the article.) The trio project is contextualized in relation to other compositions, in particular the String Quartet in F minor, op. 95, the ‘Archduke’ Trio and the Piano Sonata in A, op. 101, and an attempt is made to understand the failure of the trio project in relation to Beethoven's limited compositional activity at this much-discussed point in his career.

Research Article
Copyright © 2006 Royal Musical Association

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The archival and much of the interpretative work on which this article is based was completed during the years 1989–96. I am grateful to the staffs of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin (Preussischer Kulturbesitz), the British Library and the Biblioteka Jagiellońska for access to the relevant manuscripts in their collections; my comments on the Scheide sketchbook are based on examination of a microfilm. My thanks go to David Allsopp for his expert setting of the transcriptions reproduced in Appendices 1 and 2. While this article was in production, William Kinderman published his own examination of the sources for the F minor Trio: see Kinderman, ‘Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Trio in F Minor from 1816: A Study of its Genesis and Significance’, Journal of Musicological Research, 25 (2006), 1–42. While there is inevitably some degree of overlap in our work, I have considered that the differences in approach and conclusions are sufficiently distinct as to make constant inter-reference by means of footnotes irritating and potentially confusing to the reader. I am grateful to William Kinderman, who kindly sent me a copy of his article following its publication, and hope that the publication in close proximity of these two studies will provoke further interest in the F minor Trio and its sources.


1 Maynard Solomon, Beethoven (London, 1977), 219; 2nd, rev. edn (New York, 1998), 283.Google Scholar

2 Barry Cooper, Beethoven (Oxford, 2000), 236–59. esp. pp. 253–4. The autograph manuscript of op. 101 is dated ‘1816 / im Monath / November’, but Sieghard Brandenburg has observed that ‘this date presumably refers to the beginning of the first full copy (“der Beginn der Niederschrift”), which probably lingered on into the month of December’: Ludwig van Beethoven, Klaviersonate A-Dur Opus 101: Faksimile nach dem Autograph im Besitz des Beethoven-Hauses Bonn (Munich, 1998), VI, XIV.Google Scholar

3 Lewis Lockwood, Beethoven: The Music and the Life (New York and London, 2003), 333.Google Scholar

4 Lockwood, Beethoven, 347, 333.Google Scholar

5 My citations here knowingly exclude the ‘political’ works such as Wellingtons Sieg, op. 91, and Der glorreiche Augenblick, op. 136, on which see Cook, Nicholas, ‘The Other Beethoven: Heroism, the Canon, and the Works of 1813–14‘, 19th-Century Music, 27 (2003–4), 3–24, and Stephen Rumph, Beethoven After Napoleon: Political Romanticism in the Late Works (Berkeley, Los Angeles and London, 2004).Google Scholar

6 See Brandenburg's commentary in Ludwig van Beethoven, Klaviersonate A-Dur Opus 101, XIII, which proposes that of the piano sonatas only the ‘Hammerklavier’ had a lengthier genesis.Google Scholar

7 See in particular Lewis Lockwood, ‘Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Concerto of 1815: Sources and Problems’, Musical Quarterly, 56 (1970), 624–46, repr. in The Creative World of Beethoven, ed. Paul Henry Lang (New York, 1971), 122–44; Nicholas Cook, ‘Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Concerto: A Case of Double Vision?’, Journal of the American Musicological Society, 42 (1989), 338–74, with subsequent ‘Communications’, ibid., 43 (1990), 376–82 (Lockwood) and 382–5 (Cook).Google Scholar

8 Willem Holsbergen has not shirked the attempt to complete the first movement of the trio; the result, along with a ‘performance’ of Grasnick 29 itself (see below), may be experienced at <>..>Google Scholar

9 Gustav Nottebohm, ‘Ein Skizzenbuch aus den Jahren 1815 und 1816‘, Zweite Beethoveniana: Nachgelassene Aufsätze, ed. Eusebius Mandyczewski (Leipzig, 1887; hereafter N II), 321–48 (p. 345).Google Scholar

10 See Johnson, Douglas, Alan Tyson and Robert Winter, The Beethoven Sketchbooks: History, Reconstruction, Inventory, ed. Douglas Johnson (Oxford, 1985; hereafter JTW), 241–6.Google Scholar

11 See JTW, 33–6. The claim on p. 36 that ‘the [Grasnick] collection seems to have remained unknown to Nottebohm’ prior to 1879 seems confounded by the fact that the references to Grasnick 29 are apparently already to be found in the original version of Nottebohm's essay on Scheide, which first appeared serially in the Leipzig Musikalisches Wochenblatt during 1876: see Lockwood, Lewis, ‘Nottebohm Revisited’, Current Thought in Musicology, ed. John W. Grubbs (Austin, 1976), 139–92 (p. 180), where no changes to the original text as compared to that published in N II are recorded.Google Scholar

12 Fols. 1–4 are stitched together, the four stitch-holes being placed at distances (reading downward) of 76, 49.5 and 77.5 mm from one another. For an illustration of fol. 1r, see Ludwig van Beethoven, Briefwechsel: Gesamtausgabe, iv, ed. Sieghard Brandenburg (Munich, 1996; hereafter BG), 189.Google Scholar

13 Sieghard Brandenburg, ‘Die Beethoven-Autographen Johann Nepomuk Kafkas: Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte des Sammelns von Musikhandschriften’, Divertimento für Hermann J. Abs: Beethoven-Studien, ed. Martin Staehelin (Bonn, 1981), 89133, esp. pp. 116–24; JTW, 27. It is unclear when Add. MS 29997 fol. 20 became separated from Grasnick 29; if the fragmentary score corresponds to the manuscript sold as Lot 160 at the Nachlaß auction on 5 November 1827, then it was purchased by Tobias Haslinger. Lot 160 is described as ‘Fragment eines … Trios f. Clav:’ and as ‘Unvollendete Skizze eines unbekannten Trio für Pianof.’ in the two copies of the auction catalogue (respectively, NE 103, III, 11 and NE 79) now in the possession of the Beethovenhaus, Bonn; Haslinger is identified as the purchaser in each case. (Images of both copies may be accessed via the digital archive of the Beethovenhaus: <>.) Grasnick acquired the larger part of his own collection from Haslinger, perhaps in 1849. Since ‘all the Grasnick sketchbooks have suffered some damage, but there is no evidence that Grasnick himself was responsible for any of it’ (JTW, 35), the finger of suspicion points at Haslinger himself, assuming that Add. MS 29997 fol. 20 was still part of Grasnick 29 when the latter acquired it. Further on the Nachlaß auction, see JTW, 567–72, and Georg Kinsky, ‘Zur Versteigerung von Beethovens musikalischem Nachlass’, Neues Beethoven-Jahrbuch, 6 (1935), 66–86..)+Grasnick+acquired+the+larger+part+of+his+own+collection+from+Haslinger,+perhaps+in+1849.+Since+‘all+the+Grasnick+sketchbooks+have+suffered+some+damage,+but+there+is+no+evidence+that+Grasnick+himself+was+responsible+for+any+of+it’+(JTW,+35),+the+finger+of+suspicion+points+at+Haslinger+himself,+assuming+that+Add.+MS+29997+fol.+20+was+still+part+of+Grasnick+29+when+the+latter+acquired+it.+Further+on+the+Nachlaß+auction,+see+JTW,+567–72,+and+Georg+Kinsky,+‘Zur+Versteigerung+von+Beethovens+musikalischem+Nachlass’,+Neues+Beethoven-Jahrbuch,+6+(1935),+66–86.>Google Scholar

14 So complex, indeed, are these revisions, involving two separate ink layers and an intervening pencil stage, that the transcription in Appendix 1 presents a reconstruction of the initial ink layer only.Google Scholar

15 The paper-type of Grasnick 29 and Add. MS 29997 fol. 20 corresponds to JTW type 33, with 16 staves (see JTW, 555). There is no watermark quadrant clearly visible in Add. MS 29997 fol. 20, but this is most likely to be a trimmed quadrant 4. Since Grasnick 29 fol. 5 shows quadrant 3, the possibility arises that these two leaves are the remnant of a further gathered sheet.Google Scholar

16 A 46 is listed as SV 276 in Hans Schmidt, ‘Verzeichnis der Skizzen Beethovens’, Beethoven-Jahrbuch, 6 (1969), 7128 (p. 93), though the identification there of the relevant sketches is given as no more than ‘Klaviertrio (?)'. Joseph Schmidt-Görg, ‘Die Wasserzeichen in Beethovens Notenpapieren’, Beiträge zur Beethoven-Bibliographie: Studien und Materialien zum Werkverzeichnis von Kinsky–Halm, ed. Kurt Dorfmüller (Munich, 1978), 167–95 (p. 183; paper-type 57) errs in ascribing to this portion of A 46 sketches for ‘op. 108 u. a.’, though this error may derive from the description ‘L. v. Beethoven / Verschiedene Skizzen / (Schott.[ische] Lieder) Op. 108 / Autograph’ on the cover. I am grateful to Barry Cooper for sharing details of the various paper-types and contents of the leaves constituting A 46, including the identification of the bifolium pp. 9–12 as matching quadrants 1 and 4 of JTW type 33, mould A. These details are confirmed in Ingrid Fuchs, Ludwig van Beethoven: Die Musikautographe in öffentlichen Wiener Sammlungen (Tutzing, 2004), 94–5 and 273.Google Scholar

17 Alternatively, the connective symbols raise the possibility that A 46 p. 9 was a corrected version of the corresponding page of this other composing score – hence the blankness of pp. 1012. If it was the original continuation of that score, then the blankness of pp. 10–12 would reinforce the conclusion, already drawn from Grasnick 29/Add. MS 29997 fol. 20, that Beethoven's clear conception of the movement had not progressed much beyond the exposition.Google Scholar

18 Grasnick 29 and A 46 both exemplify Beethoven's tendency to begin writing out a potential final version at an often hopelessly early stage in the compositional process. Two remarks by Richard Kramer bear quotation in this regard: writing of the unfinished concertante movement from 1802, Kramer observed that ‘Beethoven would work intermittently between sketchbook and score within a single movement… . With fundamental aspects of the first movement still unsettled, Beethoven has begun the transfer from sketchbook to score’ (‘An Unfinished Concertante by Beethoven’, Beethoven Studies 2, ed. Alan Tyson, London, 1977, 3365 (p. 44)); furthermore, ‘Beethoven, even when he works in a book designated by its format as a sketchbook, very often intends to write the piece out complete the first time’ (idem, ‘“Das Organische der Fuge”: On the Autograph of Beethoven's String Quartet in F Major, Opus 59, No. 1‘, The String Quartets of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven: Studies of the Autograph Manuscripts, ed. Christoph Wolff, Cambridge, MA, 1980, 223–65 (p. 224)).Google Scholar

19 JTW, 243.Google Scholar

20 Fols. 17r–18v are blank except for a brief (three complete bars) pencil sketch at the top of fol. 18v which may or may not relate to the F minor Trio. Although the contents of Add. MS 29997 fols. 15–18 have apparently not previously been identified in print, an oblique reference to ‘unfinished works discussed in [N II, p.] 345’ can be found in Joseph Kerman, ‘Beethoven Sketchbooks in the British Museum’, Proceedings of the Royal Musical Association, 93 (1966–7), 77–96 (p. 95). The suggestion in Schmidt-Görg, ‘Die Wasserzeichen’, 183 (paper-type 57), that the sketches on Add. MS 29997 fols. 15–18 might relate to op. 37 should now be corrected; furthermore, the identification in the same entry of an unspecified ‘Streichquartettsatz’ on Add. MS 29997 fols. 21/22 is also incorrect: these are sketches, in score, for the Introduction and Fugue in D minor for String Quintet, Hess 40, the (fragmentary) autograph of which (Staatsbliothek zu Berlin, Artaria 185a) shares the same paper-type.Google Scholar

21 JTW, 344–6. The Mendelssohn 2 page numbers cited ibid., 345, note 3 (and in the independent essay by Brandenburg also cited there), are consistently one digit too low: the sequence should read 5–8, 25–8, etc.Google Scholar

22 Georg Kinsky, Das Werk Beethovens: Thematisch-bibliographisches Verzeichnis seiner sämtlichen vollendeten Kompositionen, comp. and ed. Hans Halm (Munich, 1955; hereafter Kinsky–Halm), 274, 462; see also the discussion of the dating of Scheide in JTW, 242–4. Cooper (Beethoven, 250) believes, on the basis of a remark in Beethoven's letter to Countess Erdödy dated 13 May (BG, iii, letter 934; p. 258) that ‘the new piano trio was being written out of affection’ for the Countess's three children. The remark in question refers to a ‘Terzett’, which would more immediately suggest a vocal composition (as suggested by Sieghard Brandenburg: BG, iii, 259, note 7); however, Beethoven did use the term in connection with the ‘Archduke’ Trio in other instances: see BG, iii, letters 809 (p. 142) and 971 (p. 295).Google Scholar

23 On Aut. 11/1, see JTW, 247–52.Google Scholar

24 N II, 321.Google Scholar

25 Staves I–2 on p. 99 carry an unidentified ink notation in B♭ major (bass clef) which presumably predated the op. 99 sketches below.Google Scholar

26 BG, iii, letters 982 (p. 304) and 996 (p. 320). Beethoven sent Birchall the Stichvorlagen for the ‘Archduke’ Trio, op. 97, and the Violin Sonata in G, op. 96, on 3 February (BG, iii, letter 895; pp. 220–1). Both works had also been sold to Steiner in Vienna, who subsequently published op. 101.Google Scholar

27 Maynard Solomon, ‘Beethoven's Tagebuch of 1812–1818‘, Beethoven Studies 3, ed. Alan Tyson (Cambridge, 1982), 193–288 (p. 255, Entry 91). See also the edition in facsimile and transcription: Solomon, Beethovens Tagebuch, ed. Sieghard Brandenburg (Mainz, 1990), 88–9.Google Scholar

28 Solomon, ‘Beethoven's Tagebuch’, 254–5 (Entry 90). ‘Staudenheimer’ refers to the doctor Jakob Staudenheim.Google Scholar

29 On the hernia operation, see BG, iii, letter 975 (p. 298); the two letters to Steiner are letters 967 and 972 (pp. 290–1, 296).Google Scholar

30 Solomon's reading of this entry is further compromised by the fact that there is apparently no other evidence to support the association of a sum of 400 florins with the ‘Archduke’ Trio. The correspondence with Steiner mentions no fee for the work; and Cooper (Beethoven, 236) points out that the trio was one of a number of compositions that Beethoven gave to Steiner as repayment for an earlier loan ‘to help support Carl and his family’.Google Scholar

31 BG, iii, letter 950 (p. 274).Google Scholar

32 BG, iii, letter 964 (p. 287); Kinsky–Halm, 277. The (undated) autograph manuscript of op. 99 is written on two leaves of JTW paper-type 33, though with 12 rather than 16 staves: see Schmidt-Görg, ‘Die Wasserzeichen’, 183 (paper-type 57). Op. 99 was published by Steiner in November 1816.Google Scholar

33 BG, iii, letter 939 (p. 264).Google Scholar

34 Archduke Rudolph was one of the three signatories to the annuity agreement of 1 March 1809; according to Cooper (Beethoven, 236), the archduke's annual payment from 1815 onward amounted to 1,500 fl. The advance payment of which Beethoven writes in the Tagebuch entry presumably relates to the expected annuity payment for 1817.Google Scholar

35 A further feature of Scheide bears examination in this context. As noted above, sketches for the F minor Trio begin on p. 86 and continue, with some interruptions for other ideas, until p. 107. Needless to say, a great many of the sketches contain the revisions and deletions that one would expect; but in addition to this, a whole series of pages (88–95, together with the three leaves from Add. MS 29997 and Grasnick 20a restored between the present pp. 92 and 93) are distinguished by having been entirely ‘deleted’ by means of a large cross covering all or most of the staves. Only three pages within this sequence – Add. MS 29997 fol. 19r–v and the consecutive Scheide p. 93 – were left untouched in this manner. The meaning of these large-scale deletions is at present unclear, but it might point to a large-scale review by Beethoven of this part of the sketchbook at some point after the sketches had originally been entered.Google Scholar

36 For example, bar 83 appears poised to cadence in D♭ major, yet the following semiquaver figuration seems to assume a background local tonic of A♭, the relative major of F minor.Google Scholar

37 The tonal underpinning of this phrase, at least in its expanded version, appears to set out from V/D♭ but then swerves toward F (major?) as part of a flatward drive through a circle of fifths C–F–B♭–E♭–A♭ (= V/D♭).Google Scholar

38 The last two bars of the fragmentary development suggest the combination of the dotted motive with a ‘white-note’ countersubject, a combination that is further contemplated in sketches on p. 105 of Scheide. There is a comparison to be made between these ideas and the examples of march–chorale opposition explored in Rumph, Beethoven After Napoleon, esp. pp. 135–6.Google Scholar

39 See his letter of 13 November 1821 to Adolph Martin Schlesinger (BG, iv, letter 1446; p. 455) and the associated discussion in Nicholas Marston, Beethoven's Piano Sonata in E, Op. 109 (Oxford, 1995), 40–1. In what follows, the term Concept will be used to refer to the composite manuscript Grasnick 29/Add. MS 29997 fol. 20.Google Scholar

40 Not shown in Example 1(d) is the two-bar piano ‘curtain’ with which this draft begins, although in a fashion not identical with that found in the Concept. The f” on the downbeat of the first phrase is unique to this draft. What is said here of the first phrase in these drafts essentially applies to the second phrase also.Google Scholar

41 As can be seen in Appendix 2, Beethoven considered two alternatives for the D♭ pedal passage, one involving the retention of the dominant pedal without the upward shift to D♭ (though D♭ is represented through the dominant minor-ninth arpeggiation): this approach relates to further revisions to the end of the Scheide draft (see p. 101, staves 15 and 16); the other reveals a seemingly even more fleeting return to the dominant from VI, on the last crotchet beat before the entry of the exposition main theme.Google Scholar

42 It should be noted that the Scheide draft continues from p. 102, staff 15, to p. 103, staff 10, just as the continuity numbers ‘8000’ and ‘800 000’ on p. 101, staff 11 find their counterparts variously about halfway down pp. 100 and 102 (see above). Here is further evidence of the distinctly ‘layered’ entry of the sketches in this part of Scheide: the top half of several pages was evidently filled in some time before Beethoven returned to use the lower portions.Google Scholar

43 In Appendix 2: bars 49 (A), 59 (C) and 78 (B).Google Scholar

44 The presence of these entries in the two manuscripts contradicts William Drabkin's assertion that this term and its associated abbreviation are peculiar to Beethoven's early sketchbooks, since it ‘would have lost much of its relevance by [the late] stage of Beethoven's art of instrumental composition’: William Drabkin, ‘Beethoven's Understanding of “Sonata Form”: The Evidence of the Sketchbooks’, Beethoven's Compositional Process, ed. William Kinderman (Lincoln, NE, and London, 1991), 1419 (p. 18). In addition to the examples cited in the main text, a further use of ‘M. g.‘ in relation to this movement is to be found in Mendelssohn 2, p. 30, staff 9.Google Scholar

45 That Example 5(e) is written on the top four staves of Scheide p. 107 suggests that it may have been entered earlier than sketches lower down on the preceding pages. It should also be noted that a highly similar version of this sketch, though not extending beyond the very beginning of the first group, is to be found on Scheide p. 102, staff 6.Google Scholar

46 Another possibility might be that this ‘Finale’ sketch was intended for the conclusion of the movement in 6/8 which Nottebohm regarded as the third and last (see further below); such an interpretation might make better sense of the notated 2/2 metre in Example 8, which would in theory have been unnecessary to stipulate if Beethoven had been thinking of the end of the first movement.Google Scholar

47 The chronological assertion made here is based on the fact that further up this page in Mendelssohn 2 (staves 4/5–8) are sketches probably for the early part of the first-movement development section, showing the dotted motive of the main theme combined with a countersubject in minims and commencing in E♭ minor. That Beethoven planned such a contrapuntal combination for this part of the movement is, as was noted above, clear from the end of the Concept, as also from related sketches in Scheide pp. 104 and 105. The Mendelssohn 2 sketch also carries the remark ‘auch Des dur gut im 2ten Theil’.Google Scholar

48 Ideas headed ‘adagio’ and ‘dolce’ are to be found on p. 106, but these seem more likely to be connected to a projected ‘sinfonia’ and/or ‘sonate’ adumbrated on this page.Google Scholar

49 N II, 348.Google Scholar

50 Scheide has suffered no physical disruption between pp. 33 and 92 (JTW, 243). It seems most reasonable to assume that the entries on pp. 66–7 were indeed written first and later transferred to p. 105; though, given the relatively piecemeal way in which Beethoven appears to have used this sketchbook, it is not impossible that the copying might have proceeded the other way round, a scenario which would at least have the merit of circumventing the anomalous position of the p. 67 ‘Deutscher’, separated as it is from the main body of sketching for the F minor Trio. The significance of the p. 66/105 entry (Example 10) remains unclear.Google Scholar

51 Taking the ‘Finale’ heading of Example 8 at face value, it may be noted that the contrasting material at either side of the double bar may itself intimate an episodic, rondo-like structure.Google Scholar

52 The only intervening unambiguous entry for the movement appears on p. 87, staff 10.Google Scholar

53 A pocket entry that is partially concordant with this continuity draft is found in Mendelssohn 2, p. 7, staves 5ff.Google Scholar

54 Even this may have been a secondary purpose, since staves 1/2 of fol. 15r are given over to a five-bar incipit in E minor, written in pencil; the score sketch for the 6/8 movement therefore begins on staves 3/6.Google Scholar

55 Compare Barry Cooper, Beethoven and the Creative Process (Oxford, 1990), 114: ‘Not only were the different sections [of a given movement] sketched in the right order, but as far as can be established the different movements were also almost invariably sketched in the same order as they appear in the finished work.‘Google Scholar

56 The Violin Sonata in G, op. 96, composed in 1812, also belongs in this group. The relevant correspondence with Steiner in Vienna and Sir George Smart, Johann Peter Salomon and Robert Birchall in London can be followed in BG, iii. Sieghard Brandenburg has argued that the surviving autographs of opp. 95, 96 and 97 all use paper-types which date from some years following their initial composition, although his presumption that these scores represent ‘significantly revised versions’ of Beethoven's original formulations has not been substantiated: see Brandenburg, Sieghard, ‘Die Quellen zur Entstehungsgeschichte von Beethovens Streichquartett Es-Dur Op. 127’, Beethoven-Jahrbuch, 10 (1983), 221–76 (pp. 223–4). Brandenburg's claims for opp. 97 and 95 are disputed in Seow-Chin Ong, ‘The Autograph of Beethoven's “Archduke” Trio, Op. 97’, Beethoven Forum, 11, ed. Stephen Hinton (Champaign, IL, 2004), 181–208, and idem, ‘Aspects of the Genesis of Beethoven's String Quartet in F Minor, Op. 95’, The String Quartets of Beethoven, ed. William Kinderman (Urbana and Chicago, 2006), 132–67.Google Scholar

57 Beethoven had in fact offered the ‘Archduke’ Trio to Breitkopf & Härtel in April 1811: see BG, ii, letter 492 (p. 184).Google Scholar

58 Op. 1 no. 2 and op. 70 no. 2 are the exceptions, though one should also note the case of the Variations for Piano Trio on Ich bin der Schneider Kakadu, op. 121a, dating from 1803 or before (see BG, i, letter 153; pp. 178–9) but apparently revised in 1816, and which open with a substantial minor-mode Introduzione. Beethoven offered the work to Breitkopf & Härtel on 19 July 1816 (BG, iii, letter 950; pp. 274–5), and the remark ‘Variationen aus meinem Jünglingsalter’ written in the upper margin of Scheide p. 87 presumably refers to op. 121a rather than to a new edition of WoO 65 or some other early variation set, as suggested in N II, 345–6. Schmidt-Görg, ‘Die Wasserzeichen’, 183, reports that the autograph score consists of his paper-type 57 (= JTW type 33), though with 12 rather than 16 staves (cf. Table 1).Google Scholar

59 The ‘Kreutzer’ Sonata is something of a special case, given the circumstances of its composition; moreover, what is involved (as in the Cello Sonata in C, op. 102 no. 1) is, unusually, a major-mode introduction to a minor-mode Allegro. Likewise, the two op. 5 cello sonatas share the same distinctive two-movement design, with the first movement being prefaced by a substantial slow introduction in both the major- and the minor-mode work. It is notable that, of Haydn's ‘London’ Symphonies, the only one that does not begin with a slow introduction is no. 95 – the sole minor-mode example in the series.Google Scholar

60 The point about the four works referred to here is that each opens with music initially construed (or construable) as slow introduction but which subsequently proves to be part of the main movement. By contrast, the recurrence prior to the finale of op. 102 no. 1 of the Andante slow introduction to the first-movement Allegro vivace retrospectively calls into question the status of the Andante qua introduction, as opposed to a more independent formal segment.Google Scholar

61 Both the quartet and the ‘Archduke’ Trio first movements differ from the F minor Trio in that the entry of the secondary tonality is marked by a distinct lyrical Seitensatz or Mittel Gedanke.Google Scholar

62 The remarks ‘erster Theil in A ohne :||: repet.’ and ‘hernach in A dur them[a]’ appear on Scheide pp. 76 and 84 respectively, in association with sketches for the first section of the March.Google Scholar

63 Not to be forgotten, though, is the insistent D♭–C motif in the first movement of the ‘Appassionata’ Sonata, op. 57, bars 10ff., nor the motion at the head of the main theme in the ‘Egmont’ Overture (bars 28–9 and their repetitions).Google Scholar

64 On the role of the open string in this movement, see Drabkin, William, ‘Beethoven and the Open String’, Music Analysis, 4 (1985), 1528 (pp. 22–4). The substitution of VI for an expected chord i/I at the beginning of the coda (bars 128–9) is a further illustration of the importance of C/D♭ relations in this quartet.Google Scholar

65 Another significant i–♭II juxtaposition is to be found in the second-time ending (bars 40ff.) of the op. 95 Scherzo; and the repeated F#–G motion in the major-mode coda to the finale might be understood as a neutralization of the Neapolitan inflection that dogs op. 95 from its opening bars onward.Google Scholar

66 If the Neapolitan is relatively muted in the Concept version of phrase C, the equivalent phrase in the Scheide and Add. MS 29997 drafts shows that Beethoven was planning a considerably more extended treatment of it in the second, ornamented version of the phrase: see especially Scheide p. 102, staves 13–14 (cf. Appendix 2, bars 63ff.).Google Scholar

67 Compare, for example, the shift from initial quaver-dominated motion to predominantly semiquaver cadential passagework in the secondary key in the continuity draft on pp. 93–4 of Scheide with the corresponding section (bars 10–50) of the op. 95 finale.Google Scholar

68 The history of this op. 111 subject reaches back as far as 1802, for it appears, in F# minor (!), on p. 74 of the ‘Kessler’ sketchbook: see Nottebohm, Gustav, Ein Skizzenbuch von Beethoven: Beschrieben und in Auszügen dargestellt (Leipzig, 1865), 1920, and Ludwig van Beethoven: Keßlersches Skizzenbuch, transcr. and ed. Sieghard Brandenburg, 2 vols. (Bonn, 1976 (facsimile); 1978 (transcription)). What may be an idea related to the E minor ‘thême’ of Example 13 appears, in F minor, on Scheide p. 90, staff 10, and p. 97, staff 12 (right-hand side): the opening figure is at once a reconfiguration of and a proleptic ‘quotation’ of the fugue subject from the first movement of the String Quartet in C# minor, op. 131; the resemblance to the fugue subject is enhanced by the identical values (minim–minim–dotted minim) of the first three notes (excluding the crotchet upbeat in op. 131) in each case. Finally, another curious near self-quotation (though this time from a work that had already been composed) appears on Add. MS 29997 fol. 37r, when a C major ‘Adagio’ (the heading is difficult to decipher confidently) in 2/4 which appears to act as a trio to an E minor ‘Menuetto’ conjures up the Tema of the ‘Eroica’ finale and its various predecessors.Google Scholar

69 The same is true of the pencilled E minor incipit at the top of Add. MS 29997 fol. 15r (see note 54 above).Google Scholar

70 JTW, 245, proposes third-movement sketches on Scheide ‘pp. 75?, 77, 78?, 82?, [and] 83’, but none of these entries can be categorically related to the corresponding section of op. 101; nor is there any sign of a planned recall of the opening bars of the first movement prior to the finale. These entries include an E major ‘adagio’ in common time (p. 75, staves 8/9) and an A minor ‘3tes Stück’, ‘poco Alltto’ in 6/8 (p. 77, staves 1/2, and repeated on p. 82, staff 5, where it is preceded by a heavily dotted introductory passage).Google Scholar

71 Further on op. 121a and Scheide, see note 58 above.Google Scholar

72 Scheide p. 96, staves 10–12, also contains a few fragmentary ideas in E minor, notated in ink as opposed to the pencil of Example 15. Note that the continuation of Example 15(a) consists of a transposition into F minor of Example 13(a). A further example of such transposition concerns an imitative passage of parallel 6/3 chords, first entered in E minor on Add. MS 29997 fol. 37v, staves 1/2, and subsequently transposed to F minor in Scheide p. 97, staves 9/10.Google Scholar

73 The rhythmic figure closing with two slurred crotchets is first heard at bar 12 in the op. 101 movement; but compared to this instance (and indeed to the very beginning of the movement) that at bar 30 is more akin to the F minor Trio in that there is much less sense of an anacrusis prior to the first downbeat.Google Scholar

74 ‘Kinship’ as used here would include not merely the prominent dotted rhythms and their martial reference but also the allusions to Baroque style and genre variously expressed through (again) the dotted rhythms as well as the chromatic descending tetrachord F–C in the bass of the op. 101 movement (bars 1–4) and the related tetrachord F–E♭–D♭–C embedded in the opening of the main theme of the trio movement. The melodic and rhythmic characteristics of the ‘thême’ discussed above further enrich the mix of Baroque referents in play in all this compositional activity. Sieghard Brandenburg has even suggested that the underlying generic model for op. 101, at least at an early conceptual stage, may have been ‘the venerable model of the prelude and fugue’: see Ludwig van Beethoven, Klaviersonate A-Dur Opus 101, III, XIII.Google Scholar

75 See BG, iii, letter 967 (pp. 290–1).Google Scholar

76 Lockwood, ‘Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Concerto’, 128.Google Scholar

77 Ibid., 126.Google Scholar

78 Lockwood, ‘Communications’, 379.Google Scholar

79 Cook, ‘Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Concerto’.Google Scholar

80 Cook, ‘Communications’, 384.Google Scholar

81 Cooper, Beethoven, 242, nominates the C major Cello Sonata, op. 102 no. 1, as ‘a clear harbinger of the style that was to pervade [Beethoven's] music for the remainder of his life’; for Lockwood, Beethoven, 346, ‘the late style in all its fullness comes forth in the Piano Sonata Opus 101'. The earlier view is well represented by Charles Rosen, The Classical Style: Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven (rev. edn, London, 1976), 403–4, as well as in Joseph Kerman and Alan Tyson, ‘Beethoven, Ludwig van’, The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, ed. Stanley Sadie (London, 1980), ii, 354–414 (pp. 386–7).Google Scholar

82 Kerman and Tyson, ‘Beethoven’, 387.Google Scholar

83 Rosen, The Classical Style, 404. For a critique of Rosen's position here, see Rumph, Beethoven After Napoleon, 235–8.Google Scholar

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In the ‘Twilight Zone’: Beethoven's Unfinished Piano Trio in F Minor
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