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Article II.- The Life of Haydn, in a Series of Letters written at

Vienna ; followed by the Life of Mozart. With Observations on Metastasio, and on the Present State of Music in France and Italy. Translated from the French of L. A. C. Bombet; with Notes by the author of " The Sacred Melodies.'

of the French ; lively, desultory, of the theory of music, and a just and more amusing than instruc. appreciation of the peculiar charactive or satisfactory. The laxity ter and merits of the celebrated of the French notions too, respect- composers whom the writer notices. ing gallantry and the duties of the We shall afterwards give extracts married life, appear in it; but not relating to music; at present our very obtrusively, and certainly not extracts must be confined to anecgrossly. The notes display a most dotes of Haydn and Mozart.


“ Francis Joseph Haydn was born and the other as a bow, constantly on the last day of March 1732, at accompanied his mother's voice. Rohrau, a small town, fifteen leagues Haydn, loaded with years and with distant from Vienna. His father was glory, has often, in my presence, a cartwright; and his mother, be- recalled the simple airs which she fore her marriage, had been cook sung; so deep an impression had in the family of Count Harrach, these first melodies made on his the lord of the village.

soul, which was all music! A cou“ The father of Haydn united to sin of the cartwright, whose name his trade of a cartwright, the office was Frank, a schoolmaster at Haimof parish sexton. He had a fine burg, came to Rohrau, one Sunday, tenor voice, was fond of his organ, and assisted at the trio. He reand of music in general. On one marked, that the child, then scarceof those journies, which the artisans ly six years old, beat the time with of Germany often undertake, being astonishing exactitude and preciat Frankfort-on-the-Mayne, he learn- sion. This Frank was well acquainted to play a little on the barp: and ed with music, and proposed to his in holidays, after church, he used relations to take little Joseph to his to take his instrument, and his wife house, and to teach him. They acsung. The birth of Joseph did not cepted the offer with joy, hoping to alter the habits of this peaceful fa- succeed more easily in getting Jomily. The little domestic concert seph into holy orders, if he should returned every week, and the child, understand music. standing before his parents, with “ He set out accordingly for two pieces of wood in his hands, Haimbourg. He had been there one of which served him as a violin, only a few weeks, when he disco

vered in his cousin's house two tam- you." He took him between his bourines. By dint of trials and per- knees, shewed him how he should severance, he succeeded in forming rapidly bring together two notes, on this instrument, which has but hold his breath, and agitate the patwo tones, a kind of air, which at- late. The child immediately made tracted the attention of all who a good shake. Reüter, enchanted came to the school-house.

with the success of his scholar, took “ It must be confessed, my friend, a plate of fine cherries, which Frank that in France, amongst a class of had caused to be brought for his people so poor as the family of illustrious brother professor, and Haydn, music is never thought of. emptied them all into the child's

« Nature had bestowed upon pocket. His delight may be readily Haydn a sonorous and delicate voice. conceived. Haydn has often menIn Italy, at this period, such an tioned this anecdote to me, and he advantage might have been fatal to added, laughing, that whenever he the young peasant: perhaps Mar- happened to shake, he still thought chesi might bave had a rival worthy he saw these beautiful cherries. of him, but Europe would have lost “ It will be easily supposed that her symphonist. Frank, who gave Reüter did not return alone to his young cousin, to use Haydn's Vienna ; he took the young shaker own expressions, more cuffs than along with him, then about eight gingerbread, soon rendered the years old. In his low fortune, we young tambourist able not only to find no unmerited advancement, play on the violin and other instru. nothing effected by the patronage ments, but also to understand La- of any rich man. It was because tin, and to sing at the parish desk, the people of Germany are fond of in a style which spread his reputa- music, that the father of Haydn tion through the canton.

taught it to his son ; that his cousin Chance brought to Frank's Frank instructed him still farther ; house Reüter, Maitre de Chapelle and that, at length, he was chosen of St. Stephen's, the cathedral by the maitre de chapelle of the first church of Vienna. He was in church of the empire. These were search of him to recruit his children natural consequences of the habits of the choir. The schoolmaster soon of the country relative to the art proposed his little relative to him; which we admire. he came; Reüter gave him a canon Haydn has told me, that datto sing at sight.

ing from this period, he did not re“ The precision, the purity of collect to bave passed a single day tone, the spirit with which the child without practising sixteen hours, executed it, surprised him ; but he and sometimes eighteen. It should was more especially charmed with be observed, that he was always his the beauty of his voice. He only own master, and that at St. Steremarked, that he did not shake, phen's, thechildren of the choir were and asked him the reason, with a only obliged to practise two hours. smile.' The child smartly replied, We conversed together respecting “ How should you expect me to the cause of this astonishing applishake, when my cousin does not cation. He told me, that, from bis know how himself?” — " Come most tender age, music had given here,” says Reiter, “I will teach him unusual pleasure. At any time,


he would rather listen to any instru. . at Vienna at certain periods, some ment whatever, than run about with of those amateurs who only want his little companions. When at play the faculty of feeling, dexterously with them in the square, near St. place themselves in a situation Stephen's, as soon as he heard the where i bey could see Hadyn, and organ, he quickly left them, and regulate, by bis smile, the ecstatic went into the church. Arrived at applauses by which they testified to the age of composition, the habit of their neighbours the extent of their application was already acquired : rapture! Ridiculous exhibitions ! besides, the composer of music has These people are so far from feeling advantages over other artists, bis what is fine in the arts, that they productions are finished as soon as never even suspect that there is a imagined

modesty belonging to sensibility. “ Haydn, who abounded in such This is a little piece of truth, which beautiful ideas, incessantly enjoyed our sentimental ladies will doubtthe pleasure of creation, which is, less feel obliged to me for having doubtless, one of the highest grati. taught them. I will add an anecfications which man can possess. dote which may serve both as a The poet shares this advantage with model in the art of ecstatics, and as the composer; but the musician an excuse, if any frozen fellow can work faster. A beautiful ode, should think proper to be ironical, a beautiful symphony, need only and indulge in ill-timed pleasantry. to be imagined, to cause in the mind ~ The Artaxerxes of Metastasio of the author that secret admiration was performed in one of the first which is the life and soul of artists. theatres of Rome, with the music But in the studies of the military of Bertoni ; the inimitable Pacchiaman, of the architect, the sculptor, rotti, if I am not mistaken, exethe painter, there is not invention cuted the part of Arbaces. During enough for them to be fully satis- the third representation, at the fafied with themselves ; further la- mous judgment scene, in which the bours are necessary. The best plan. author had placed a short symphony ned enterprize may fail in the exe- after the words cution; the best conceived picture

Eppur sono innocente,' may be ill painted ; all this leaves the beauty of the situation, the muin the mind of the inventor an ob- sic, the expression of the singer, had scurity, a feeling of uncertainty, so enraptured the musicians, that

, , which renders the pleasure of crea- Pacchiarotti perceived, that after he tion less complete. Haydn, on the had uttered these words, the orcontrary, in imagining a symphony chestra did not proceed. Displeaswas perfectly happy; there only ed, he turned angrily to the leader remained the physical pleasure of -" What are you about?" The hearing it performed, and the moral leader, as if waked from a trance, pleasure of seeing it applauded. I sobbed out with great simplicity, have often seen him, when he was “ We are crying." In fact, not beating time to his own music, un- one of the performers had thought able to refrain from smiling at the of the passage, and all had their approach of a passage which he was eyes, filled with tears, fixed on the pleased with. " I have also seen, at singer. ihe great concerts which are given " I saw at Brescia, in 1790, a man, of all Italy perhaps, the most courses of literature' were at the affected by music. He passed his bottom of the ocean : they teach lite in hearing it: when it pleased people of small abilities to produce him, he slipped off his shoes with works without faults, and nature out being aware of it; and if the makes them produce them without pathetic was carried to its height, beauties. We are afterwards obliged he was accustomed to throw them to wade through these dull essays : over bis head upon the spectators." our love for the arts is diminished


thereby, whilst the want of inst;uc“ Less precocious than Mozart, tion will, assuredly, never stop the who, at thirteen years, produced an course of a man, whom nature bas applauded opera, Haydn, at the formed to be great. Look at Shakesame age, composed a mass, which speare, at Cervantes : it is likewise Hause Reüler very properly ridi- the history of Haydn. A master culed. This sentence surprised the might have prevented him froin fallyoung man, but full of good sense ing into some of the faults which he at that early period, he was aware of committed in the sequel, when he its justice : be was sensible that it wrote for the church and the thea. was necessary to learn counterpoint, tre; but he would certainly have and the rules of melody, but from been less original. He alone is the whom was he to learn them? Reü. man of genius, who finds such deter did not teach counterpoint to the lightful enjoyment in his art, that children of the choir, and never he pursues it in spite of obstacles. gave niore than two lessons in it to The torrent which is destined to beHaydn. Mozart had an excellent come a mighty river, will overthrow master in his father, who was an the dykes by which its course may esteemed performer on the violin. be restrained. It was otherwise with poor Joseph, “ Like Jean Jacques Rousseau; a friendless chorister in Vienna, he bought, at a second hand shop, who could only obtain lessons by some Theoretical books, amongst paying for them, and who had not others, the Treatise by Fux, and he a halfpenny. His father, not with- set about studying it with a persestanding his two trades, was so poor verance which the horrible obscu. that when Joseph had been robbed rity of the rules could not overcome. of his clothes, on his communicat- Labouring alone, without a master, ing the misfortune to bis family, his he made an infinite number of little father making an effort, sent him discoveries, which were afterwards six florins to refit his wardrobe. of use to him. Without either

“ None of the masters in Vienna money or fire, shivering with cold would give lessons gratis, to a boy of in his garret, and oppressed with the choir who basi no patronage; sleep as he pursued his studies to a and it is to this misfortune, perhaps, late hour of the night, by the sido that Haydn owes his originality. of a harpsichord out of repair, and All the poets bave imitated Homer, falling to pieces in all parts, he was wlio imitated no one : in this alone still happy. The days and years he has not been followed ; and it is few on rapid wing, and he has perhaps owing to this, more espe- often said, that he never enjoyed cially, that he is the great poet whom such felicity at any other period of the world adinires. For my own his life. Haydn's ruling passion part, I wish, my friend, that all the was rather the love of music than 2817.




the love of glory; and even in his luntary lackey, suffered himself ocdesire of glory, not a shadow of am- casionally to soften, and gave him bition was to be found. In com- some good advice. Haydu was faposing music, he sought rather his voured with it more especially, own gratitication, than to furnish whenever he had to accompany the himself with the means of acquiring fair Wilhelmina in singing some of celebrity.

the airs of Porpora, which were “ Haydn did not learn recitative filled with basses difficult to underof Porpora, as you have been told: stand. Joseph learned in this house the inferiority of his recitatives to to sing in the best Italian taste. those of the inventor of this kind of The ambassador, astonished at the music, is a sufficient proof of this; progress of this poor young man, but he learned from him the true gave him, when he returned to the Italian style of singing, and the art city, a monthly pension of six seof accompanying on the piano-forte, quins, and admitted him to the table which is not so easy a thing as is of his secretaries. This generosity commonly supposed. He succeeded rendered Haydn independent. He in obtaining these lessons in the fol

was able to purchase a black suit. lowing way:

Thus attired, he went, at day“A noble Venetian, named Cor- break, to take the part of the first ner, at that time resided at Vienna, violin at the church of the Fathers as ambassador from the republic. of the order of Mercy; thence He had a mistress, passionately fond he repaired to the chapel of Count of music, who had harboured old Haugwitz, where he played the orPorpora in the hotel of the embassy. gan: at a later hour, he sung the Haydn found means to get intro- tenor part at St. Stephen's. Lastly, duced into the family, purely on after having been on foot the whole account of his love of music. He day, he passed a part of the night was approved of; and his excel- at the barpsichord. Thus forming lency took him, with his mistress himself by the precepts of all themusiand Porpora, to the baths of Ma- cal men with whom he could scrape nensdorf, which were the fashion- an acquaintance, seizing every opable resort at that time.

portunity of hearing music that was “Our young man, who cared for reputed good, and having no fixed nobody but the old Neapolitan, master, he began to form his own employed all sorts of devices to get conceptions of what was fine in muinto his good graces, and to obtain sic, and prepared himself, witbout his harmonic favours. Every day being aware, to form, one day, a he rose early, beat the old man's style entirely his own. coat, cleaned his shoes, and disposed, in the best order, the antique periwig for the old fellow, who " My Friend, Baden, Aug. 28, 1808. was sour beyond all tbat can be The ravages of time extended imagined. He obtained at first no- their influence to the little fortune tbing but the courteous salutation of of Haydn. His voice broke, and at fool” or “ blockbead," when he the age of nineteen he quitted the entered his room in a inorning. But class of Soprani at St. Stephen's, or, the bear seeing himself served gra- to speak more correctly, and not to tuitously, and observing, at thesame fall all at once into the style of patime, the rare qualities of bis vo- negyric, he was expelled from it.

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