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

Milan 1 Dec. 1770

Your letter of the 16th has arrived safely. I wrote on the 24th in some haste and as a result I forgot to tell you that your letter of the 9th, containing your own and Nannerl`s best wishes, had arrived safely, footnote1 although Wolfgang was rather saddened to read it and said to me: I feel very sorry for Mama and Nannerl because in his last letter Papa wrote such wounding remarks by way of a joke. I told him that you would no doubt assume that I`d receive your letter very shortly. And, indeed, I received it only a few hours after my own letter had already gone to the post. So I send you my solemn thanks. On the evening of the day on which I sent you my last letter - the 24th - we received a visit from B Riedheim and his steward, and on Monday the 26th we met him at the concert at the home of H E Co Firmian. He offered to take a letter with him, but as I write to you in any case every Saturday, I thanked him while declining his offer. I was tempted to give him some trifles for you, for which he could easily have found room, including, f ex, some pieces of the True Cross and other relics or a couple of snuff-boxes. But it was raining so badly and the weather has been so appalling that I shall have to wait till I`m back in Salzb. to pay a return call on B Riedheim. By the time you read this, you`ll already have spoken to him and heard that we`re in good health, praise God: he`ll also have told you what a wretched orchestra there was at the concert footnote2 because the good players have all gone off to the country with their employers and won`t be returning to the rehearsals for the opera for another 8 or 12 days.
The diaries have arrived safely. You say that the Countess Lodron was at H Spizeder`s wedding. But which one? - - Presumably the wife of the marshal of the archbishop`s household? - - It`s no good giving me half the story, I need to hear all of it. You think the opera is already finished. You`re very much mistaken. If it had been up to our son, 2 operas would have been finished by now, but in Italy the situation is completely insane, as you`ll discover in due course - it would take too long to describe it all here. At the time of writing, the primo uomo still hasn`t arrived. It`s said that he`ll be here today without fail. Farewell, both of you, we kiss you 100000000000 times, and I am your old


Dearest Sister,
As I`ve not written for so long, I thought I`d appease your anger or your reproach by means of the present lines. Papa will have told you that we`ve had the honour of making the acquaintance of Baron Rietheim. I now have a lot of writing and work to do on my opera, I hope that with God`s help it will all go well. Addio. Farewell. I am, as always, your faithful brother
Wolfgang Mozart

P.S.: Kiss Mama`s hands for me, best wishes to all our good friends.


Best wishes to all our good friends inside and outside the house.
We were just leaving the house yesterday when we heard something that will strike you as incredible and that I never expected I should hear, especially in Italy. We heard two beggars, a man and a woman, singing together in the street. And they sang their whole song together in fifths, without missing a note. I`ve never heard this in Germany. From a distance I thought it was two people singing different songs, but when we got closer, we saw that it was a beautiful duet in perfect fifths. I immediately thought of the late H Wenzel and that if these 2 beggars were to sing on his grave, he`d unfailingly rise from the dead.
Please use the following reference when citing this website:
Eisen, Cliff et al. In Mozart's Words, Letter 221 <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.