Librarian finds hand written Beethoven manuscript

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Librarian finds hand written Beethoven manuscript

Now you don't see one of these every day, especially when it goes up for auction for a million pounds...

I wonder what Beethoven was doing in a religious school in Philadelphia .....

More on the site...

ABC News

LONDON (Reuters) - A unique manuscript by Ludwig van Beethoven that was lost for more than a century will go on sale in London in December priced at over one million pounds.

Discovered in July at the bottom of a dusty filing cabinet at a religious school in Philadelphia, the manuscript is a work in progress for the composer's Grosse Fuge in B flat major one of his most revolutionary works.

... Quote:
This is an amazing find. The manuscript was only known from a brief description in a catalog in 1890 and it has never before been seen or described by Beethoven scholars.
said Stephen Roe, head of auction house Sotheby's manuscript department.

Not only is the 80-page document a working manuscript for the only piano version of a major work by Beethoven, it is one of his few compositions for a piano duet.

Sotheby's, which will auction the document on December 1, said it was the most important Beethoven manuscript to have come to market in living memory and would prompt a complete reassessment of his works.

It is the second time very rare musical documents have been found by chance at the former Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary now renamed the Palmer Theological Seminary. A Mozart manuscript was discovered there in 1990.

"At that time we called it the 'Mozart miracle'. It seems appropriate that this time we are thankful for the 'Beethoven blessing,"' said seminary president Wallace Charles Smith.

The German composer who continued to work as he went slowly deaf, wrote the work in 1826 one year before his death as the finale for his String Quartet in B flat major.

The piece is notoriously difficult to perform and, because it was musically far ahead of its time, did not immediately sit well with audiences either.

The manuscript is written in brown and black ink and includes annotations in pencil and red crayon.

Music scholars have welcomed it as breath of fresh air, clearly illustrating the working methods and thought processes of a musical genius.
By netchicken: posted on 15-10-2005

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