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[SALZBURG, 19 JULY 1771]
Your Excellency! footnote1
I have never felt as sick at heart as I do now in reproaching myself for having in some way deserved the shameful title of ingrate inasmuch as I have delayed until now to send Y Excellency our news. My lack of skill at writing in Italian has meant that I have kept putting off the moment when I should have done my duty, more especially since I had persuaded myself that Y Exc had not lacked news of my son`s success in Milan, footnote2 news that was accurate, impartial and in consequence more valuable in keeping with the proverb `Propria laus sordet etc.` . footnote3 Now that, praise be to God, we are safe and sound in Salzburg, I take the liberty of troubling Y E with the present letter and of informing you that we had scarcely arrived home when I received a letter from the Impresa of the Teatro di Milano inviting my son to write the opera for the 1773 Carnival, while shortly afterwards he was asked to go to Milan at the beginning of this coming September to write the serenata or stage cantata for the wedding of H R H the Archduke Ferdinando, footnote4 a commission all the more prestigious in that the oldest of the maestros, Sgr Adolfo Hasse, known as il Sassone, will write the opera, while the youngest one writes the serenata. A certain Abbate Porini is currently writing the libretto of the cantata, which, they tell me in Vienna, will be finished by the middle of next month and which will be titled Ascanio in Alba. Meanwhile my son is writing an oratorio by Metastasio for Padua that has been commissioned by Sgr Don Giuseppe Ximenes de Ppi d`Aragona. When I pass through Verona, I`ll send this oratorio to Padua to be copied, and on our return from Milan we`ll go to Padua to hear it rehearsed. footnote5 Father and son thank Y E for all the favours we have received and humbly offer our most devout respects to Your Excellency, to H E the Signora Contessa, our benefactress, and to His Most Illustrious Sgr Contino, and we beg you to remain kindly disposed to us, while declaring myself and my son, with all our zeal and devotion,
Your Excellency`s
most humble and devoted
Salzburg 19 July 1771.
Leopold Mozart
Please use the following reference when citing this website:
Eisen, Cliff et al. In Mozart's Words, Letter 239 <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.