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À Madame / Madame Marie Anne Mozart / à / Salzbourg.
Rome 30 July footnote1 1770

You`ll have received the letter that I wrote to you from Rome on the 27th. footnote2 I forgot to tell you that old Baron Tschudi has died and that we saw him being buried a few days before we left Naples. I passed on His Excellency Count Spaur`s good wishes to Baron Fridolino Tschudi, and he asked me to return them. If the opportunity arises, you may also care to pass on our own good wishes. You ask if Wolfg. has already started the opera. But we still haven`t given it a moment`s thought. You should ask us again when we reach Milan on the first of November. So far we know nothing about the cast or the libretto. We know only who the primo uomo and tenor will be - the primo uomo is Herr Sartorini, who appeared in Turin during the last carnival, and the tenor is Signor Ettore. We met Herr Sartorini here in Rome; he came looking for us yesterday and told us that he believes the first opera will be Nitteti . footnote3 Basta! We still have plenty of time. - - Have we performed for the king? - - Anything but! We`ve got no further than the empty compliments paid to us by the queen wherever she`s seen us. The queen can do nothing, and it`s better to tell you in private what sort of a person the king is, rather than describing it in writing. You can easily imagine what goes on at this court. The young violinist, La Motte, who is in the service of the empress and who came to Italy on her instructions and at her expense, spent a long time in Naples and delayed his departure by 3 weeks because he`d been told that the king and queen would hear him: but in spite of this, nothing happened. In due course I`ll tell you a whole series of amusing things about this court. You`ll also see the king`s portrait. footnote4 I hope I`ll soon be in a position to let you know what we`ll be doing here. I`ve been forced either to remain indoors or to limp around very slowly with the result that I`ve not been able to pay my respects on any of the princes and cardinals. I omitted to explain the reason for this in my first letter, but things are now looking better, and so I must tell you about my unfortunate accident. You know that 2 horses and 1 postilion make 3 beasts. During the last stage to Rome footnote5 our postilion struck the horse, which was walking along between the shafts and therefore supporting the sedia on its back. The horse reared up but became increasingly stuck in the sand and dust, which were more than six inches deep, and fell heavily on its side, pulling down the front section of the sedia as the sedia has only 2 wheels. I held back Wolfg. with one hand to prevent him from being thrown out, but my right leg struck the centre bar of the falling dashboard with such force that half the shin bone of my right left was gashed open to the width of a finger. I should add that the dashboard couldn`t be hooked up and so it had fallen back down. By the next day the matter was beginning to look somewhat serious as my leg was very swollen and I spent most of yesterday and today in bed. But today, as I`m writing these lines, things are much better, and the wound, which is very long, looks good, it`s no longer suppurating and I`m not in any pain. I used only the white ointment, and I`m sticking with that. Perhaps this was bound to happen, otherwise you`d have packed the ointment and lint in vain, I`m only sorry that there`s so little plaster. Please write with the next post and tell me how it`s made. If the letter doesn`t arrive in time, Abbate Marcabruni will forward it. Abbate Crivelli heard about my leg injury and visited me this afternoon and also showed me the certificate of baptism. footnote6 As soon as I`m feeling better, we`ll have lunch with him. footnote7 You mustn`t worry, with God`s help my leg will get better, I`m just annoyed that I`ll have to stay in Rome longer than I`d thought - not because of Rome, for I like the city and am glad I`m here, but because of the journey ahead of us. God will protect us. It`s still not very hot, but that will change. Farewell to you & Nannerl, I kiss you both 1000 times and am your old
Best wishes to all and sundry.
Where did these weddings take place? - - -
Herr Marcobruni sends his best wishes.
In Naples I spoke to Obexer, footnote8 who`s a Jesuit, and also to a young man called Tiboni, who is now here.
Please use the following reference when citing this website:
Eisen, Cliff et al. In Mozart's Words, Letter 194 <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.