View from Beethoven's Death Room

View from Beethoven's Death Room

Three days after Beethoven’s death, Johann Nepomuk Hoechle visited the maestro’s home (in the Schwarzspanierhaus).  He was allowed to create a “portrait” of Beethoven’s study - exactly as it appeared when Beethoven died.

The Beethoven-Haus, Bonn provides more detail about this work:

Shortly after Beethoven's death, painter and lithograph Johann Nepomuk Hoechle visited the composer's dwelling. On that occasion, he drew a pen drawing of Beethoven's living room.

Following Hoechle's draft, an etching and a coloured lithography were made and published between 1827 and 1832. Together with the original drawing they constitute one of the most relevant sources for the reconstruction of Beethoven's death room.

Hoechle's drawing shows the room from about the same angle the dying Beethoven had from his bed. The door that linked the dining room with the living room can be seen on the left side. One of the two piano fortes stands in front of the door, covered with piles of paper and sheet music.

The second instrument, which the composer had borrowed from Conrad Graf, is not depicted. It may already have been removed from the flat when Hoechle made his drawing.

The draft also shows a bookcase between the windows, a piece of furniture that Beethoven's friend Gerhard von Breuning mentioned in his Beethoven memories.

The bust on the right windowsill, however, is a figment of the painter's imagination.

Click on the image for a greatly expanded view.

Media Credits

Drawing of Beethoven's study, by Johann Nepomuk Hoechle.  Online, courtesy Web Gallery of Art.


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"View from Beethoven's Death Room" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Oct 19, 2019.
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