250th Anniversary of the Birth of Ludwig van Beethoven


Commemorative postage stamps

Year of issue: 2020

In stock


Ludwig van Beethoven (Bonn, 1770 – Vienna, 1827) was a German composer, one of the greatest composers of all time. His impressive music opus includes, among other, nine symphonies, 16 pieces for string quartets, 32 piano sonatas, one opera, two masses, five piano and one violin concertos. Particularly striking are his Symphony No. 5, Symphony No. 6, Symphony No. 9, Missa Solemnis, piano pieces such as Für Elise, Sonata Pathétique, Moonlight Sonata, Apassionata or The Last One.

Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn, Germany, to father Johann who was the Bonn court musician and mother Magdalena Keverich. Thanks to his father, he started to play at an early age, first as a piano performer. He quickly gained the reputation of a piano virtuoso and master of improvisation. His artistic form was very expressive, impetous and emotional, nearly perfect, but because of his misfortune – gradual hearing loss that started when Beethoven was 26 – he had to end his pianistic career. Although he composed his Symphony No. 1 before 1800 while still performing as a pianist, his deafness progressed in 1802 to the extent that Beethoven became increasingly isolated and avoided people; he even communicated with friends through notebooks which, after his death, were printed out and sold.

Just like other composers of his time, Beethoven created under the influence of the then popular and folk music, so that the motifs of dance rhythms from the Rhein area and the elements of Italian, French, and even Celtic folk music, can be detected in his works. Although as a composer he “relied” on the tradition of Haydn (who was his music teacher for some time) and Mozart, his art aspires towards the new, romanticist ideals of Goethe and Schiller striving, just like their books, to balance form and feelings.

Beethoven created the greatest masterpieces in his world of silence: Missa Solemnis, Hammerklavier Sonata, the last String Quartets, and in 1824 he completed his Symphony No. 9 on which he had worked since 1817, and which crowned his musical opus in the truest sense of the word. The famous Symphony No. 9 was premiered in Vienna on 7 May 1824, and Beethoven, although totally deaf, personally conducted at that first performance, completely unaware of the applause, until the moment when the soloists turned him towards the audience. He died in Vienna in 1827.

Artistic realization of the issue: MA Boban Savić, academic painter.

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