“How unfair you are with me,” wrote Beethoven in his testament alluding to people’s inability to understand his pain.
Beethoven was known to be ill-tempered and irritable. But it’s no wonder. Aware of his own genius and virtuosity, added to the irony of being a musician and also deaf, one can imagine his despair.
Ludwig Van Beethoven, German pianist and composer of the Classical and Romantic eras was born in 1770. He died at the age of 56, leaving behind a stunning body of work that ranged from concertos and sonatas to entire symphonies.
In his youth, around the age of twenty-six, he began to lose his hearing and was subjected to hot spring baths, various extensive and innovative treatments, and visits to doctors who applied different medications without any result. As the disease gradually progressed he continued looking for a cure.
Due to his deafness, Beethoven was isolated from people, not only to hide his condition but because he could not hear what they were saying. However, we know from his music and writing that he was a very passionate man, who had many relationships with women, members of high society and the aristocracy of the time.
Later and advanced in years, Beethoven suffered from strong stomach pains, and they would remove water from him with a kind of glass needle, several liters at a time.
Despite his bad moods and poor health, he was able to create great works that were intense, passionate and full of joy.
Several years ago, after many studies, the reasons for his terrible pain and suffering and perhaps his deafness were discovered. Find out in part two in our next edition.