A Brief Biographical Note on Beethoven's Life

1770 (Dec 17): Baptised (exact date of birth is unknown)

1778: First public appearance in Cologne followed by Holland (1781)

1782/3: The first publication of a work by Beethoven (WoO 63; Nine Variations on a March by Dresser)

1787: A brief visit to Vienna to take lessons from Mozart

1790: The cantatas were written (WoO 87/88)

1792 (Nov 10): Arrived in Vienna to take lessons from Haydn

1794: Payment from Bonn ceased, Haydn left for England, Beethoven started to take lessons from Albrechtsberger, Schenk and Salieri

1795: His Opus 1 Piano Trios were published; His public debut in Vienna (March 29); First Piano Concerto (No.2) was completed

1796: European concert tour

1800: First Symphony was completed; first of his nine benefit concerts took place (April 2); Prince Lichnowsky granted an annuity of 600 florins

1801: A love affair with Giulietta Guicciardi (dedicatee of the Moonlight Sonata)

1802: Progressive deafness diagnosed (otosclerosis). He wrote the Heiligenstadt Testament (Oct 6)

1804: The Eroica was finished. A love affair with Josephine von Brunsvik started (ended in 1807)

1805 (Nov 20): First performance of Fidelio (further revisions in 1806, 1814 and 1822)

1808: Last concert appearance as a pianist

1809: An annuity (4000 florins) for life was granted by Rudolf, Kinsky and Lobkowitz

1810: He considered marriage with Therese Malfatti

1812 (July 6-7): The letter to 'the unsterbliche Geliebte' Antonie Brentano (dedicatee of the Diabelli Variations)

1816: The song cycle An die ferne Geliebte was written; he was assigned as the guardian for his nephew Karl

1818: After a long non-productive spell, the Hammerklavier was finished; total deafness; loss of the noble status

1822: Missa Solemnis was finished (he considered this as his greatest work); the last Piano Sonatas were written

1823: The last piano piece was written: the monumental Diabelli variations

1824 (May 7): Public performance of Symphony No.9

1826: The last of the last quartets Opp.131 and 135 were finished. His last composition was a new finale for Op.130; Karl's attempted suicide (July 29); terminal signs of cirrhosis (Dec 13)

1827 (March 26, 5:45pm): Died of liver cirrhosis

See also: Naxos 4-CD Set with Narration on Beethoven's Life and Works (Cat. No. 8.558024-27)

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