BEETHOVEN 200 YEARS AGO TODAY: Wednesday, March 31, 1824

Beethoven again does not work on his proofreading, having decided that there will be no Akademie concert after all.

Nephew Karl drops by briefly. Uncle Ludwig would like to go try again at St. Rochus Church to get the signoff from the priest verifying he is still alive, so he can collect his annuity. Karl says he can do it tomorrow. Ludwig appears to suggest borrowing some money from publisher S.A. Steiner, because Karl tells him Steiner has no money.

The housekeeper advises that capons and fresh butter will be arriving in four days.

Later in the day, Brother Johann, having returned from Linz and his estate in Gneixendorf, visits Ludwig, who invites Johann to dinner. Johann says he already ate an hour ago.

Ludwig, stewing at everything, even complains about the costs of candles. Johann thinks he’s being ridiculous and tells him a pound of candles costs only 45 kreutzers, and every servant needs at least one every evening.

Ludwig may or may not tell Johann he has given up on the idea of an Akademie concert. He does complain about the expense of holding one. Johann tells him that in Paris violinist Joseph Böhm on tour had to give the theater half of his proceeds.

Johann has wheat, corn and wine being produced on his estate in Gneixendorf, but nothing has been brought to market, so the estate isn’t even making a 2 percent profit. [This may be in response to Ludwig asking to borrow some money.]

Beethoven appears to accuse Johann of failing to contact Duport to reserve the Grosser Redoutensaal before leaving for Linz, blaming him for the Akademie falling through. An angry Johann says, “That is an infamous lie. I went to see him two times.”

Ludwig tells Johann he has at last succeeded in selling the various pieces that he had given to Johann in satisfaction of debts: the Opferlied op.121b, the Bundeslied op.122, the Arietta Der Kuss op.128, the 6 Bagatelles, op.126, and the Consecration of the House Overture, op.124. However, the buyer, Heinrich Probst in Leipzig, wants two- and four-hand piano transcriptions of the Overture to be included in the 100 ducat price. Johann asks whether Ludwig has the piano score yet. He does not. Johann tells him that Czerny can make it. [The prolific Czerny does in fact eventually transcribe both piano versions of the Overture.]

Johann does not attempt to convince Ludwig to do the Akademie concert, but after leaving the apartment he may contact Schindler, letting him know Ludwig has gone off the deep end, since Schindler shows up tomorrow.

Conversation Book 60, 45r-46r.