Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Article

November 27, 2021

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Salzburg, January 27, 1756 - Vienna, December 5, 1791) was an Austrian composer and musician. Baptized with the name of Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, he is counted among the greatest geniuses in the history of music and among the most prolific, versatile and influential composers of every era. He was also the first of the most important musicians to undertake a career as a freelancer, parallel to his commitments as Hofkomponist ("composer") at the Viennese Imperial Court. Franz Joseph Haydn had this to say that posterity would not see comparable talent for the next 100 years.With a rare and precocious talent, he began composing at the age of five and died at thirty-five, leaving pages that profoundly influenced all the major musical genres of his time, including symphonic, sacred, chamber music and works of various genres, so much so that he was defined by the Grove Dictionary as "the most universal composer in the history of Western music". His music had a very profound influence on Western music, and in particular on Ludwig Van Beethoven. Included in the greatest exponents of eighteenth-century musical classicism, together with Franz Joseph Haydn and Ludwig van Beethoven constitutes the triad to which, in musicological literature, some authors refer as the first school of Vienna.

The name

Mozart's given name was Joannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart: Joannes Chrysostomus, because the child was born on January 27, the day of St. John Chrysostom; Wolfgangus (which means "to walk like a wolf"), name of the maternal grandfather, Wolfgang Nikolaus Pertl (1667 - 1724); Theophilus, name of the godfather, Johann Theophilus Pergmayr, merchant and civic councilor. His father Leopold familiarly called his son Wolferl. The name Amadeus is the Latin translation of the name Theophilus (from the Greek Θεόφιλος Theophilos, meaning "he who loves God" or "he who is loved by God"); later (from 1771) he was also called Amadé or Amadè. In the early years his father also used, in some letters, the German version of his name, namely Gottlieb. It seems that Mozart suffered a certain impatience with the ending '-us' affixed to the end of his names, so much so that at times he signed himself with joking emphasis: Wolfgangus Amadeus Mozartus.

Biography

Birth and family

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27, 1756 at 8.00 pm at Getreidegasse 9 in Salzburg, capital of the archbishopric of Salzburg, at the time a sovereign territory belonging to the Holy Roman Empire in the Bavarian Circle. Wolfgang was baptized the day after his birth at the Cathedral of San Ruperto. The news of Wolfgang's birth was given by his father Leopold (1719-1787) in a letter dated 9 February 1756 to a friend from Augsburg, Johann Jakob Lotter: Wolfgang's parents were almost the same age (the mother differed from the husband of a only year) and they were well-known and active people at the time of his birth: his father Leopold, composer and music teacher, held the position of deputy Kapellmeister at the court of Archbishop Anton von Firmian; his mother Anna Maria Pertl (1720 - 1778) was the daughter of a prefect. Of the seven children of Leopold and Anna Maria, Wolfgang aside, the only one not dead in infancy was her older sister Maria Anna (1751 - 1829), called Nannerl or Nannette. Familiarly, little Mozart was known by the nicknames of Wolferl or Wofer.

Early genius (1756–1769)

The child showed a talent for music as precocious as it was extraordinary, a real child prodigy: at three he was beating the keys of the harpsichord, at four he was playing short pieces and at five he was already the author of some compositions such as, for example, an "Andante and Allegro "or as the" Allegro "and the" Minuetto "written between 11 and 16 December 176

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