English  |  Deutsch  |  Italiano  |  Français

À Madame / Madame Marie Anne Mozart / à / Salzbourg / par Mantova

Milan 20 Oct. 1770

We arrived in Milan safe and sound, thank God, at 5 in the evening on the 18th. We had to spend a whole day in Parma as the rivers were so swollen by the amazingly heavy rain that no one could cross them. All afternoon on the 14th we drove through an amazing thunderstorm and terribly heavy rain, but my luggage didn`t get wet as I`d protected it in a double layer of oilcloth. For the past 3 weeks I`ve had very painful rheumatism in my right arm, and it stayed me with on my journey. But at least it hasn`t got any worse and is in fact noticeably better, even if I`ve not got rid of it completely. NB: I don`t need anything for it and haven`t needed anything either. I expect it to leave as it came. The movement of the sedia wasn`t at all good for me, but I kept thinking that evil must be banished by evil. So it was a fairly tiresome journey on account of the thunderstorm and the heavy rain, and a somewhat painful one on account of my arm. We left Bologna a few days later than planned because the Philharmonic Academy unanimously elected Wolfg. a member of their society and presented him with a diploma of Accademico Philarmonico. But this happened only after all the necessary preliminaries and after he had been duly examined. He was required to appear at the Hall of the Academy at 4 o`clock on the afternoon of 9 Oct.; in the presence of all its members, the Princeps Accademiæ and 2 Censores |: who are all old Kapellmeisters :| gave him an antiphon taken from an antiphoner, of which he had to write a 4-part setting in an adjoining room, where he was taken by the Pedellus, who locked the door after him. Once he`d finished , footnote1 it was examined by the Censores and all the Kapellmeisters and composers, and a vote was then taken, which was done by means of black and white balls. As all the balls were white, he was called in, and everyone applauded his entrance and congratulated him, after the Princeps Accademiæ had told him in the name of the society that he had been accepted as a member. He thanked them, and with that it was all over. H Prinsechi and I were meanwhile locked in the Academy`s library on the other side of the hall. Everyone was amazed that he completed it so quickly as many people had spent 3 hours on a 3-line antiphon. NB: You should know that this is no easy task as this type of composition excludes many things that aren`t permitted and that he had been told about previously. He completed it in a good half hour. The Pedellus then brought the certificate to our house. It`s in Latin and includes the following words: - - - testamur Dominum Wolfgangum Amadeum etc: - - Sub die 9 Mensis octobris anni 1770 inter Accademiæ nostrae Magistros Compositores adscriptum fuisse etc: footnote2 - This does him all the more credit in that the academy is already more than 100 years old and membership of the Accademia Bonnoniensis includes not only P Martino and a number of other distinguished Italians but also the most distinguished men of other nations. footnote3 I was handed your letter of 5 Oct. at the gate as we were driving into Milan as it was enclosed with H Troger`s letters, footnote4 which he had left there. As you`ll see from my earlier replies, I`ve received all your letters. I`m pleased to hear that H Breitkopf has paid. Make a note of all the copies that you sell or for which you`re paid or that you give away, in short, everything, so that when I get back I shall know where I stand with these people. Farewell, both of you, we kiss you 100000 times, and I am your old
All manner of good wishes to all our friends.


My dear Mama, I can`t write much as my fingers hurt from writing so many recitatives: footnote5 please pray for me, Mama, that the opera goes well and we can all be happy together again. I kiss Mama`s hand a thousand times, and I`d have lots to tell my sister, but what? That`s something only God and I know, if it`s God`s will I hope I`ll soon be able to tell her in person, but for now I kiss her a 1000 times. Best wishes to all our good friends. We`ve lost good little Martha, footnote6 but with God`s help we`ll find her in a better place.


Wasn`t it a good idea about the diary? - - I can now receive 2 diaries in 4 or 5 letters, even if they contain only 2 or 3 months each, I`ll get them soon enough, I`ve already got the main part. I don`t want to open Herr and Frau Hagenauer`s wound by writing a letter of condolence. What can`t be changed must be left to God`s discretion. What else can be done? -
Please use the following reference when citing this website:
Eisen, Cliff et al. In Mozart's Words, Letter 214 <http://letters.mozartways.com>. Version 1.0, published by HRI Online, 2011. ISBN 9780955787676.
In Mozart's Words. Version 1.0, published by HRI Online, 2011. ISBN 9780955787676.