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Vienna by a Frenchman, who was in habits of intimacy with Haydn for some years before his death, and received, from his own mouth, most of the anecdotes with which his account of him is interspersed. The account of Mozart, is translated from the German of a person who had his information from very authentic sources. It is considerably shorter than the other, as it is confined to Mozart alone-while the author of the Letters has mixed up a large portion of extraneous matter in his life of Haydn. We can now afford but a very brief notice of either.
Haydn was born in 1732, of very humble parents, and distinguished himself by his musical genius before he was twelve years of age. He composed several pieces before he was eighteen. He used to practise from sixteen to eighteen hours every day; and was in a state of extreme poverty till 1758, when he got an establishment in the family of the Prince Esterhazy. After this, his life was very uniform—the whole morning being spent in composing, and the evening in performing and superintending the performers in the opera. The total number of his compositions amount to no less than 990. When he sat down to compose, he always dressed himself with the utmost care-had his hair nicely powdered, and put on his best suit. Frederick II. had given him a diamond ring, and Haydn declared, that if he happened to begin without it, he could not summon a single idea. He could write only on the finest paper; and was as particular in forming his notes, as if he had been engraving them on a copperplate. After all these minute preparations, he began by choosing the theme of his subjectand fixing into what keys he wished to modulate it ;-and he varied the action, as it were, of his subject, by imagining to himself the incidents of some little adventure or romance.
Such singularities, however, seem to have been common among composers. Gluck, when he felt himself in a humour for composing, had his piano carried into a beautiful meadow, and, with a bottle of champagne on each side of him, transported his imagination to Elysium. Sarti, a man of gloomy imagination, preferred the funeral stillness of a spacious room, dimly lighted by a single lamp. Cimaroza delighted in noise and mirth:surrounded by a party of gay friends, he conceived his operas; and, as the ideas presented themselves, he seized and embodied them. In this way he planned that beautiful comic opera, il Matrimonio Segreto. Paesiello composed his Barbiere de Seviglia, and La Molinara, in bed :-and Sacchini declared, that he never had moments of inspiration, except his two favourite çats were sitting, one on each shoulder.
In 1790, at the age of fifty-nine, Haydn left Eisenstädt, to visit London. Salomon, a professor in that city, who gave twenty concerts in the year, had engaged to give him 501. for each concert
. He remained only a year, but returned again in 1794. He met with the most flattering reception in both these visits. The University of Oxford sent him a Doctor's diploma,an honour they rarely conferred upon any one, and which was not obtained even by Handel himself.
The Creation was finished in 1798; and, about two years after, the Four Seasons was completed. This was the last work of magnitude that came from his pen. His strength rapidly declined, and his faculties were almost wholly gone; but he survived till 1809, and died just after the French took possession of Vienna.
Mozart was born at Salzburg in 1756, and is well known to have been a prodigy of early talent. When only three years old, his great amusement was finding concords on the piano; and nothing could equal his delight when he had discovered an harmonious interval. At the age of four, his father began to teach him little pieces of music, which he always learnt to play in a very short time; and, before he was six, he had invented several small pieces himself
, and even attempted compositions of some extent and intricacy.
The sensibility of his organs appears to have been excessive. The slightest false note or harsh tone was quite a torture to him; and, in the early part of his childhood, he could not hear the sound of a trumpet without growing pale, and almost falling into convulsions. His father, for many years, carried him and his sister about to different cities for the purpose of exhibiting their talents. In 1764 they came to London, and played be fore the King: Mozart also played the organ at the Chape! Royal ; and with this the King was more pleased than with his performance on the harpsicord. During this visit he composed six sonatas, which he dedicated to the Queen. He was then only eight years old. A few years after this, he went to Milan; and, at that place, was performed in 1770 the opera of Mithridates, composed by Mozart, at the age of fourteen, and performed twenty nights in succession. From that time till he was nineteen, he continued to be the musical wonder of Europe, as much from the astonishing extent of his abilities, as from the extreme youth of their possessor.
Entirely absorbed in music, this great man was a child in every other respect. His hands were so wedded to the piano, that he could use them for nothing else: at table, his wife carved for him; and, in every thing relating to money, or the management of his domestic affairs, or even the choice and arrangement of his amusements, he was entirely upder her guidance. His health was very delicate; and, during the latter part of his too short life, it declined rapidly. Like all weak-minded people, he was extremely apprehensive of death; and it was only by incessant application to his favourite study, that he prevented his spirits sinking totally under the fears of approaching dissolution. At all other times, he laboured under a profound melancholy, which unquestionably tended to accelerate the period of his existence. In this melancholy state of spirits, he composed the Zauber Flöte, the Clemenza di Tito, and his celebrated mass in D minor, commonly known by the name of his Requiem. The circumstances which attended the composition of the last of these works, are so remarkable, from the effect they produced upon his mind, that we shall detail them; and, with the account, close the life of Mozart, and this long article.
One day when his spirits were unusually oppressed, a stranger of a tall, dignified appearance, was introduced. His manners were grave and impressive. He told Mozart, that he came from a person who did not wish to be known, to request he would compose a solemn mass, as a requiem for the soul of a friend whom he had recently lost, and whose memory he was desirous of conmemorating by this solemn service. Mozart undertook the task; and engaged to have it completed in a month. The stranger begged to know what price he set upon his work, and immediately paid him a hundred ducats, and departed. The mystery of this visit seemed to have a very strong effect upon
the mind of the musician. He brooded over it for some time; and then sudklenly calling for writing materials, began to compose with extraordinary ardeur. This applicaticn, however, was more thau bis strength could support; it brought on fainting fits; and his increasing illness obliged him to suspend his work. “I am writing this Requiem for myself!' said he abruptly to his wife one day; • it will serve for my own funeral service;' and this impression never afterwards left him. At the expiration of the month, the mysterious stranger appeared, and demanded the Requiem. ! I bave found it impossible, said Mozart, ' to keep my word; the work has interested me more than I expected, and I have extended it beyond my first design. I shall require another month to finish it. The straniger made no objection; but observing, that for this additional trouble, it was but just to increase the premium, laid down fifty ducats more, and promised to return at the time appointede Astonished at his whole proceedings, Mozart ordered a servant to follow this singular personage, and, if possible, to find out
who he was: the man, however, lost sight of him, and was obliged to return as he went. Mozart, now more than ever persuaded that he was a messenger from the other world, sent to warn him that his end was approaching, applied with fresh zeal to the Requiem; and, in spite of the exhausted state both of his mind and body, completed it before the end of the month. At the appointed day, the stranger returned ;-but Mozart was no more!
Art. V. The Rise and Progress of the City of Glasgow, com
prising an Account of its Public Buildings, Charities, and other Concerns. By JAMES CLELAND.
This book is the production of one of the citizens of Glasgow; tion. Nothing, indeed, can be more interesting than an enlightened and comprehensive account of such an assemblage of human beings as are now to be found in the second-rate towns of our empire: And, when one thinks of the mighty influence of Cities, either as the organs of political sentiment, or the engines of political disturbance--when one regards the economy
of their trade, and sees in living operation what that is which originates its many and increasing fluctuations--one cannot but look on the authentic memorials of such facts as are presented to our notice in this volume, with the same sense of their utility, as we would do on the rudiments of an important science, or on the first and solid materials of any deeply interesting speculation. There is one point, however, which at this moment
engrosses all that we can spare of our attention. So late as the end of last August, when the wages for weaving were at the lowest, Mr Cleland made a survey of the employed and unemployed hand-looms of Glasgow and its immediate neighbourhood. Taking a radius of about five miles from the centre of the city, thus excluding Paisley, but em. bracing the whole suburbs, and many very populous villages, --he found 18,537 looms altogether, within the limits which we have just now specified ; of which 13,281 were still working, and 5256 were, for the time, abandoned. It is to be observed, however, that, in many instances, several looms belong to one proprietor, which are wrought, in conjunction with himself, either by journeymen, or the members of his own family; and that this, of course, reduces both the number of weaving families upon the whole, and also that number of them who had resigned their wonted employment,
It is satisfying to have such a correct statement of an evil connected with the severest commercial distress that ever perhaps our country was involved in,-and in a quarter, too, where that distress was understood to be greatest. When the arithmetic of its actual dimensions is thus laid before us, it brings both the cause and the remedy more within the management of one's understanding. But it will still require a little consideration, to enable us to calculate the true amount, and understand the true character of this great calamity.
In the first place, then, it ought to be kept in mind, that there are particular lines of employment, where a given excess of workmen is sure to create a much greater proportional reduction in the rate of their wages. Should twenty thousand labourers, in a given branch of industry, so meet the demand for their services, as to afford to each of them a fair remuneration, then an additional thousand coming into competition with those who are already at work, may very possibly lower, by much more than a twentieth part, the price of their labour. In other words, the consequent deficiency of wages might go greatly beyond the fractional addition that had thus been made to the number of labourers. It is thus that, in certain kinds of work, a very sniall
excess of hands may bring a very heavy distress and depression upon a whole body of operatives. The urgency of a few more than are wanted, soliciting for employment, and satisfied with any terms rather than be kept out of it, may bring down the terms, to the whole profession, in a ratio so large, that the entire maintenance of these additional applicants for work would not nearly cost so much as is lost, upon the whole, by the body of their fellow workmen in the shape of reduced wages. For example, should two shillings a day be a fair remuneration for labour, and should it be the actual remuneration earned by twenty thousand workmen at some particular kind of it, an additional thousand might be maintained at this rate daily for an hundred pounds. But we should not be surprised to find that the effect of their appearance and of their competition was to bring down the daily wages to eighteen pence. Now, this would degrade beneath the average of comfort, twenty-one thousand workmen, by sixpence a day to each, or by five hundred and twenty-five pounds a day to them all, taken collectively. In other words, a certain redundancy of men might entail a calamity upon their profession, which, when measured arithmetically, will be found to exceed, by upwards of five times the whole expense, either of maintaining them in idleness, or of giving them full and adequate wages at another employment.