BEETHOVEN 200 YEARS AGO TODAY: Monday, April 7, 1823

In the morning, Beethoven makes a note to write to Karl, and that their shirts need to be mended. He also makes a note to write “To Rovantini.” Beethoven was related to the Rovantinis by marriage; a cousin of his mother had married Johann Conrad Rovantini, a court violinist to the Elector of Trier. His son gave Beethoven violin lessons. However, Beethoven is not known to have stayed in touch with the family after leaving Bonn, and it is unclear whether any of the family was even still alive in 1823.

At a coffeehouse, Beethoven reads the newspapers and makes notes of several possible apartments for the fall.

There are no datable entries for today with Schindler, who has rehearsal at the Theater in the Josephstadt until 5 PM. However, he writes several letters dated today for Beethoven, and gets the composer’s signature on them at some point. The first is the standard solicitation letter for the Missa Solemnis, in French, to King Ferdinand I of Naples. Brandenburg Letter 1623. The original is held by the Berlin Staatsbibliothek, (aut. 35,19).

A letter also goes out to Nikolaus Simrock in Bonn (Brandenburg Letter 1624). However, the letter is lost and its contents are unknown. Its existence is known only from Schindler’s note in Beethoven’s 1823 calendar for April, “7. to Simrok [sic].”

Also on this date, Carl Maria von Weber writes to Beethoven, and this letter was surely related to the score for Fidelio, which is scheduled to open on April 29th. Most likely it was an agitated letter asking where the score is. The letter does not survive, however, and its existence is known only from a notation in Weber’s diary, per Thayer/Forbes p.863.