BEETHOVEN’S FIRST STRING QUINTET, 1796
BEETHOVEN, Ludwig van. Grand Quintetto per due Violini, due Viole, e Violoncello, dal Sigr. Luigi van Beethoven. Opera IV. Vienna: Artaria, . Original unbound parts (as issued). $3600.
First edition of the instrumental parts of this 18th-century Beethoven score, fully engraved.
Beethoven’s first String Quintet is an adaptation of an earlier octet for wind instruments. The changes introduced between the octet and quintet versions are significant and relate to Haydn’s influence on Beethoven. “In the short space of years between the octet (1792) and the quintet (1796) the great London symphonies of Haydn had appeared and… Beethoven felt this change of emphasis in his larger forms. Whereas the octet looks backward to the divertimenti and serenades of the past, the quintet expresses the more serious expression and intent of the great Viennese symphonic works. That Beethoven [saw the need for] this major revision, while still keeping the essential thematic structure intact, shows how far the court composer at Bonn had developed into the great symphonist of the future” (Scherman and Biancolli, 204-206). Eighteenth-century Beethoven scores are increasingly scarce. Faint owner ink-stamps to each part, contemporary ownership signature of W. Brand to outer wrapper.
Light soiling to outer wrapper. An extremely good copy.