Symphonies and their meaning

Various editions 1. [Classic symphonies] -- 2. Classic symphonies -- 3. Modern symphonies 1st-3rd series 7...

0 downloads 35 Views 17MB Size

Recommend Documents


Gardens and their meaning
extracted picklist

Gardens and their meaning, by Dora Williams
The metadata below describe the original scanning. Follow the "All Files: HTTP" link in the "View the book" box to the left to find XML files that contain more metadata about the original images and the derived formats (OCR results, PDF etc.). See al

The Standard Symphonies: Their History, Their Music, and Their Composers; a
Book digitized by Google from the library of Harvard University and uploaded to the Internet Archive by user tpb.

Digitized by the Internet Archive in

2012 with funding from

Brigham Young University

http://www.archive.org/details/symphoniestheirm01goep

tfA

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

5 .GCS.

-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING BY PHILIP

H.

GOEPP

NINTH EDITION

PHILADELPHIA & LONDON COMPANY J. B. LIPPINCOTT

Copyright, 1897 BY J.

B. Lippincott

Company

HAROLD B LEE LIBRARY BRI6MAM T0UN6 UNIVERSITY

PROVO. UTAH

TO MRS.

A.

J.

D.

DIXON

WHO ENCOURAGED THE

LECTURES

FROM WHICH IT GREW THIS BOOK IS

DEDICATED

Musicus qui numerans nescit

se

numerare

PREFACE

The

plan of this

really the reverse

book

of the

is

very simple

traditional.

It is

Little

here told of the lives of the masters

is

of a

;

composer's ancestry, of the painful scale of his career,

is

Con-

no

place.

have,

events

crete

And

even of the date of his works.

yet,

it

in this

themselves,

in

believed, instead of a loss, there

is

very omission a great gain of per-

sonal interest, of insight into the essence of

a master's

individual

quality,

of his poetic

character.

The is

plan

there,

is

to

open the book and

without discovering subtle

see

what

stories or

graphic pictures, avoiding, too, a mere technical analysis.

There

may

be, in

such an ac-

count of the impression of a master work, a discovery here and there of symbolic cance.

The

signifi-

exact nature of this middle road

cannot well be predicated. 7

It is

here that the

PREFACE book must stand the

in

fulfilment,

its

own

which lies the words of the

defence,

not in

promise.

no value whatever in a mere theoretic exposition of themes and deUndoubtedly the subjective invelopment. There

tensity

at the outset,

is,

of the impression

strongly to

is

be

But there must be the balwhich resists allegory run riot.

reckoned with. ance, the rein

In such a view master.

It is

is

the true mirror of the

an unfailing, perfect

test.

From

such a quiet, all-surveying study, as one looks at a painting standing off,

the pervading quality, if tect

its

more

lack.

it

it

is is

The beauty

possible to see there, or to de-

will

ever appear

clearly, or the faultiness, the meretricious

deceit, the

patched pretence of homogeneous

whole.

Another word about the symphonies.

In

the

title

"

meaning" of the this word has a

negative intent, quite as strong as the positive.

The book

is

meant to

terpretation, as to urge the right.

ing

lies

in the balance

wrong inTrue listen-

restrain the

of intense enjoyment

There must be no clouding by the one, nor too much interference of

and

clear perception.

PREFACE In a simple setting forth

translating thought.

of a serious enjoyment will be

all

the

"mean-

ing" that the master will claim for his work, or the musician for his far

But

art.

the music gives the

were

to tell just

of the master

spirit

idle in a preface, as

the purpose of

is

it

how

the book.

Thus

the

aim

primarily to set forth the

is

impression of each of certain chosen symphonies,

and through them to

clear

get, at first hand, a

glimpse of the individuality of each of

the great masters.

Secondarily,

it

is

intended

by the mode presented, an attitude in the listener which will increase his enjoyment by an intelligent perception of the to suggest,

intent of the master, or which, for critical purposes,

may

serve in testing a

new work.

An

ultimate object, which

it

pursue categorically,

the suggestion of an

is

underlying purpose in the

of

its

is

not intended to

art,

and, similarly,

scope, wherein will be involved certain

incidental questions of the connection between

the art-work

and the intent or unconscious

thought, the personal tone, even the morale, of the master.

——————

CONTENTS PAGE

Preface

7

Chapter

I.

Chapter

II.

Chapter

III.

Introductory

The Symphony

23

Haydn

— Symphony "

*— Symphony

Chapter IV. *~

13

in

D

42

(Peters Ed.

in E[? (Peters

No.

Ed. No.

Mozart

68

in

G

Minor.

Symphony

in

C

Major ("Jupiter").

Beethoven

— Symphony No. Chapter VI.

3

94

(Eroica)

Fifth

125

Symphony

Chapter VII. Unfinished

Chapter IX.

147

Schubert

177

Symphony

193

— Symphony in Chapter VIII.

100

Beethoven (Continued).

— Seventh Symphony



1).

Symphony

Chapter V.



3).

C

Major

201

Schumann

248

Schumann (Continued).

Second Symphony (in

C 11

Major)

270

———— CONTENTS PAGE

Chapter X.

Schumann (Continued).

Third Symphony (" Rhine")

Chapter XI. Italian

Mendelss$hn

342

Symphony

Chapter XII. Chapter XIII.

310

354

Brahms

366

Brahms (Continued).

""Second Symphony

377

12

SYMPHONIES

AND THEIR MEANING

INTRODUCTORY There attitude

are

some

truths concerning the right

of listening to music, which had best

be mentioned at the outset.

They

are not to

be proved, like a theorem, in the pages which follow

;

intent.

there

On

axiomatic

;

is

no such

deliberate or definite

the contrary, they seem almost

they are fundamental

cussion and enjoyment of music.

in

all

dis-

But they

have been so long forgotten that they have a

new

look.

The

present generation

may

well

be reminded of them. In so far as they will be regarded as necessarily true,

they

may

stand as the landmarks of

the view, here presented, of the great masterpieces.

In so far as they 13

may

be challenged,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the succeeding chapters are offered as exempli-

from which

fications

their truth

by a kind of inductive

cluded

unhappily, the time has not

tematic philosophy of

may

be con-

proof.

come

For,

for a sys-

or even of the tonal

art,

branch.

Agreement

is

wanting as to basic

principles.

No

one dares to define the

the

method of its working, or even the meaning

of the word.

real

purpose of

This youngest of the

art,

sisters,

music, has utterly disturbed traditional views. Aristotle's definitions

of

art will

we

fit

with

So, in music espe-

Beethoven's symphonies. cially,

not

are too near, so to speak, to take a

general view.

We

are

still

groping in the

bewilderment of a new paradise of sense impressions for

of the

some

principle, for the fruit

first

of knowledge, whereby we

tree

may

good from the evil. The first of these axioms is most in need of assertion, though its simple statement would probably pass an easy muster. But the attack is always subtle, indirect, and wide-spread.

discern the

There principles is

is ;

truth in art, resting on fundamental

its

landmarks

exist

no true perception, no just 14

;

without them there

criticism.

Very

likely

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the

point of this

from the opposite that everything

statement will fallacy,

good

is

does seem that this

of music.

It

is,

is

be

clearest

which we often

hear,

that sounds good.

It

a critical time for the art

one might say, the hour

for

the declaration of independence, and, strangely,

many from

the leaders, but of the

leaders

from the many.

In prose and in poetry

we do

not hesitate to apply the searching

not of the

of sound ideals.

spect

with clear principles and highest

art,

And we are wont to listen with reto those who are trained to know and There

to judge.

few

is

a natural leadership of the

critics in literature, in painting,

Yet

chitecture.

we

the arts

dictum, that

insist it

Nay, we dare

we

cause fied to

test

is

in

on all

;

in ar-

complex of all rampant democratic

the most this

a rude question of

taste.

to hold that precisely just be-

are not trained,

judge

and

that

it is

we

are better quali-

the very knowledge that

unfits the critic.

This art.

is

It is

surely a strange condition for a great

not wise to dispute such a position,

do more than show its absurdity. All will agree that it is one of the primeval purposes of art to develop a sense of beauty. But how

to

*5

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING will the

first

touchstone

if

our taste in the to be the

is

There can be no progress,

?

argument or

The

come,

condition of ignorance

original

in

step ever

in fact.

phase of

fault lies, in reality, in that

modern

which

art

sound

to the winds

casts

and

principle, clear process,

sensational

either

and emotional

rests

effect,

in

all

in

the

utter in-

difference to the true or the false, the right or

wrong of

the workmanship.

We do not intend, surely, to let music

be to

us a mere narcotic, to affect us in a passive, un-

reasoning

Therefore, I say,

state.

than ever there

is

us from the false to

become

his

need

for true leaders, to save

but

;

own

now more

far

critic,

more



still,

for

each

to master the prin-

which underlie true art, and the right attitude of reception and of perception. In the classical past it was our good fortune ciples

to have trust

none but true

leaders.

them unconsciously

But with

later

We learned to

as well as implicitly.

democratic

stirring there

came

demagoguism. Men appealed over the heads of those who had the true, the saner inevitable

intuition

to

the

ruder

mob

to

whom

clear

thought was naught, sensational amusement 16

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Democratic

all.

ment, there

is

as

we must be

no doubt

in

govern-

bursts of

that the

popular will throughout the nineteenth century-

have had a

sinister effect

upon

The lower

art.

with the lower classes have broken

instincts

away from

Within the right democrat in government not higher.

the

meaning, the true

only can, he must be the true aristocrat in

And thus we may explain much monly charged of words cure

late against art,

as degeneration

and

we must

as

is,

of what

is

art.

com-

under such

Our only

decadence.

act as a democracy, to

have the feeling and thought of true

aristoc-

racy.

We

must pay

art,

in

general and special,

the respect of an intelligent attitude, which

can only acquire by mastering

mode of tury ago

thought

its

working, and

all this

in

its

its

we

process, the

intent.

A

cen-

could not have been seriously

need even of suggestion.

The second

premise relates to a question

which has always raged with much uncertainty the connection between the master's thought and his art-work. How far does he translate a "meaning" into his music? :

How 2

far

has he an intent that must be 17

re-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING garded

Or

?

is it

merely a pretty amusement,

by nice combinations color, and in outline ?

a delight of the senses,

of beauty

in

And

latter

this

garded, is

when

tone, in

it

cannot

alternative

ing, that, while the apparent purpose

mere

conscious subjective betrayal

in contrast

un-

feeling,

not strange.

Throughout

of action or of utterance its effect

is

is

At once

the stress on the

is

unconsciousness of purpose.

less

is its

with the conscious, objective depic-

charm and mystery

;

that of

is

of a dominant

tion in poetry and in the plastic arts.

ful

break-

is

delight, the true essence of music

who

of the

critic

Gradually, however, the truth

day.

disre-

seems to be held by one

accounted the greatest German

the

be

And

life

yet

it

is

consciousness

not only not need-

actually weakening as a use-

diversion of the mind.

It

is

this

very

absence of self-observation which gives music

overwhelming power as a means of expression. This is in harmony, too, with that its

modern experience which believes more and more in personal force and influence, which, without materialism, believes

less

and

less

in

the virtue of definite dogma.

In a talk with a friend, the spoken word 18

is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING not essential, rather the personal attitude un-

So

consciously betrayed.

in a

symphony of

Beethoven the ultimate purpose

the utter-

is

ance of the high thought or feeling of a great

However unconscious

man. I

think

may justly

it

this

aim may

be,

be called the true intent

of the master. It

may

be thought, however, that there

on the art proper, perfection of form and detailed beauty. here too

answer

little

stress

perhaps

is,

subtle

in

its

The

between the

:

is

in-

and nobility of the feeling which dominates the poet, and its artistic expression is a tensity

close

and curious connection, and,

analogy.

As, after

all,

further,

an

the apparent, the con-

work of art, the nobility of the poet is measured by the nobility of his work his clearness of vision, by the perscious purpose

is

a beautiful

;

fection of detail.

The

truth

compels a great utterance

where there

is

;

is,

a high feeling

and conversely,

a beautiful expression there must

be nobility of the prompting thought.

Thus

the greatest poets will have the purest form.

proportion as the feeling or thought its

utterance will be sustained in a

high structure.

A

true 19

poet does

is

In

intense,

work of not roar

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING himself into a

emotion

;

to hear.

that

is

order to convey his

in

state,

not the kind the world cares

Therefore

follows, of course, that

it

the feeling at the source

only reached by a

is

perception of the beauty of the art-work.

And

must always be so to study the master-works as to feel most keenly the un-

the

object

conscious

mood-purpose of the

the

intent,

creator.

It is clear

how

the

first

premise leads to the

second as a natural preliminary, and reinforces the other.

So the

how

each

third will prove

but a larger view of the second

;

and

are

all

but different phases of the whole truth. In poetry

we do not

hesitate to regard the

moral quality of the poet.

music

In

this

Yet in music this personal tone of the poet is more potent far than in the other arts it is more subtly seems never to be thought

of.

;

conveyed, and needs most to be watched.

moral influence

much

logically

tionally.

is

exerted,

or

most powerfully, most

we know, not

intellectually,

Music, which

affects

easily 20

All

the

as

so

emo-

feelings

conveys the per-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of the poet to the hearers.

influence

sonal

We all

know

the moral force of companion-

Yet how could this personal tone be conveyed more directly than by a word uttered in living figures of ship,

of mere neighborhood.

sound.

The

mystery, of course,

is

how we

are to

detect this moral quality, where there are tell-tale

as

is

it

words and

nothing

minded pointed

listener in

the

and open-

both phases, the good and

moral and

unmoral.

I

have

above to the curious connection or

analogy between honesty of of

philosophy,

in systematic

so clear to the persistent

is

bad,

the

Impossible, however,

story.

sum up

to

no

feeling.

It is

art

and honesty

equally true between the dis-

honesty of the one and of the other.

In an

unbiassed and intelligent attitude, no category

of evidence in court

plan

it

clearer than

from the

document of symphony

four corners of the opera.

is

or

For thoroughly following out such a might be well to embrace works of

both kinds.

It

must follow that

if

we glow

in

tune with the high aspiration of a Beethoven,

we must be ready false prophet.

to discern the trick of the

But

in a 21

work

like the present

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the negative phase of criticism cannot be

more

than suggested. It

here that musical

just

is

been lacking.

criticism

has

has followed an even tenor

It

of so-called catholic tolerance of good and bad, of the false and the true. lost all

thought,

it

Again,

In fact,

it is

as

art

after

well

as

gives

all,

It is precisely in

pleasure.

aesthetic.

the moral that rouses the greatest

enthusiasm, in

charming,

has

has taken no account what-

of any element beyond the mere

ever,

it

in

mere

life.

The

temporary

so far as the moral

element has been forgotten that music has not

been highly regarded.

Thus, then, point of view second,

master

how is

in the attitude first

the

of the intelligent

insisted on, intent,

the

we

see,

from the

feeling

of the

from the particular work

reflected

how, from a broader view even than the second (rather from a suc-

and

finally,

from the

third,

cession of such impressions), the morale of the

master shines clear throughout his

22

art.

II

THE SYMPHONY would seem, begins its career, like man, by leaning on another. Thus, sculpture was first subordinate to architecture. Painting, in turn, was the foster-child of sculpture, in the beginning merely tracing outlines and Art,

it

much

features,

like

an infant writing with

guided hand.

Music

in

Greece

metre of the poetry.* fore Gregory, the

intoned

followed

slavishly

the

In the early church, be-

words of the liturgy were

with complete

subservience

to

the

rhythm of the verse, so that agreement of singing was possible only when the chorus followed the arbitrary leader. It is most valuable to see clearly the final * With

all

the

"

discoveries" of Pindaric odes, nothing

has ever established the fact of a

Greek conception of Greek

musical rhythm independent of that of the verse.

" music"

lacked the

first

requisite for a tonal art.

23

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING evolution of the independent art of absolute

instrumental music as the latest link in this

Leaning on the words and story of the drama, music developed, on the stage of the chain.

accompaniment in tones colored by various blending and contrasting instruments. She was preparing her pallet. In opera, melody,

and

its

the church, following the lead of the service,

music was exploring

all

the possibilities of poly-

phonic combination and of architectural complexity

by algebraic computation.

neither

church service nor

progressing unaided.

Of

in

But in opera was she

course,

walking with

from depending on a guiding parent. So differs the music of Palaestrina from that of Ambrose. But even in the great Bach's works music had not thrown away all her a cane

is

different

She

supports.

first

learned to tread her inde-

pendent course, speaking her message purely in her

own

when

language of tones unaided by words,

she

lisped

the

first

sonata,

which, in

symphony. that the entire It must be remembered growth of the art of music, and what was

orchestral dress,

really

the

is

the

slow manufacture of

its

elements

and forms, was wrought within the Church. 24

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING This development began when to the unison chant was added the servile accompaniment of a second voice, keeping always respectful

distance.

unaltered

its

ended when

It

all

the

changes of fugal counterpoint had been rung

But

with mathematical ingenuity.

until

mod-

ern centuries there had not been a thought of

When

music without words, of unsung music. the absurdly artificial forms were

by mutinous

singers, the

abandoned

organ took the place

of the unwilling voice, and invited further composition for

But

this

its

special performance.

had nothing

instrumental

secular

common

in

music

and

its

with

origin.

For the elements, we must go back to the strange attempts at opera

The very convenient 1600



is

by

Italian amateurs.

date of the

first

an excellent landmark

in

opera

gauging



unsung secular music, the year when Peri's " Eurydice" was produced in Florence. It is in the formless preludes and interludes of the players that the germ of the

the growth of

symphony

lies.

The

first

conception of flow-

ing cantabile melody, which

and

tissue

early opera.

is

the very fibre

of every movement, came (There

is

25

absolutely

in

the

no kinship

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING between

and the fugal theme of the With these the dance, of ob-

this melody

church school.) scure

origin,

completes

the

foundation

on

which sonatas and symphonies were reared. If we enter the forge in which these materials were being welded into the great forms of the symphony, in other words, if we study the precursors of the masters, we find, indeed,





little

promise of intellectual significance,

or, for

that

matter, of pleasurable amusement.

But,

in

art,

periods of exclusively formal growth

always lack latent heat,

men, they

it

imaginative

when

find,

thought.

novelty.

first

like

Great

are content with the

form

Shallower minds, sensitive to popuat

new

devices of outward

Thus, Sebastian Bach did not find

Haydn was

the sonata sufficiently perfected. the

is

hiding the lines with their fulness of

demand, tinker

lar

It

changes to water.

ice

would seem,

power.

master to approve.

Therefore, in a

review of the history of musical thought rather

than of musical structure, that the sonata lar

it

may

fairly

be said

and the whole school of secu-

instrumental music did not begin before

Haydn.

The analogy between Bach and 26

the secular

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING masters

is

In his earlier generation

striking.

he found nothing but the

He

church school. artistic

purpose

strict

forms of the

gave them their essential

he crowned their development

;

by endowing them with the highest expression of

religious

When

feeling.

a

master thus

reaches the greatest height, a lower level must

be started

in

another direction, leading to a

second master. If

we

take a survey of this

worldly composition

— melodies

new stream of with

artificial

accompaniment, digressions of rippling or

scales

tripping arpeggios and suddenly intruding

crashes of full

what

found

is

chords

contrast

it

with

the church school with

in

its

and elaborate structure of

dignified,

precise,

—and

voices, independent in melody, yet interdepen-

dent in harmony, the question comes,

What

moves here ? How can there be, almost at the same time, two opposite phases of the same art, both honored by the greatest

new

spirit

masters

?

Clearly, here

weakest,

same

is

wave of

the latest, though not the

the Renaissance pulse.

The

rebellion against the all-absorbing intel-

lectual

domination of the Church, the same 27

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING resistless

wave of earthly

feeling

pression, apparent in painting

and

of England, France, and

tures

movement

is

ex-

its

in the literaItaly, is

manifest in the youngest of the the

and

here

Why

arts.

so late in music need not

be discussed beyond again saying that the

art

was jealously and exclusively fostered by the Church. All its forms, its whole framework had been devised solely for worship. An entirely

new garb must be

created before

it

could

venture from the cloister into the gay world

without great awkwardness and

stiffness.

Much

depth of feeling or intellectual emphasis must not be expected of the

new

The

phase.

actionary origin ness.

early

by

first

century of this

works show

utter frivolity

their re-

and shallow-

Until an actual fitting form was ob-

tained, there satisfaction

was a constant

of

this

striving

fill

in as

a

very need, a self-conscious

kind of emphasis of mere sound

sought to

after

many

;

the composer

black notes as pos-

sible.

The beginning of Haydn's final

career

marks the

attainment of this form, and at the same

time a sudden spring of true poetic feeling.

The

result

was what

is

28

commonly

called the

— ;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING sonata,

ing;

which

for a

is

what we

really

symphony

is

are consider-

nothing

else

than a

In the light

sonata written for the orchestra.

of the absolute newness of unsung music

which which

merely sounded,

is

" sonata," that

name

seen the fitness of the

is

in contrast

with that

" cantata."

Nowhere, I venture to say, in any phase of art, is the shock greater than of this burst from the sombre, is

confined,

sung, the

careful,

intellectual

process

cloister to the free, irresponsible first

meadows and

over the

into

the

life

of the

fancy dancing

in the forests, then

of men, the turmoil and the

triumph of war, the romance and ecstasy of

human

affection.

It is first

clear, then,

of the

why

the expected order

less defined,

clearly significant phase

second of the more

of the

art

—should be

Within the cloister music had reached a high and complex power of expression of those feelings which were there sanctioned. Without, all was new and vague there were no words or forms of expression for the new life. It must begin with the of a new language. To condemn the first reversed.

ABC

fruits

of

this stage for lack 29

of definiteness of

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING meaning would be to misunderstand the very purpose of

not impossible to tion

no more

;

While

all art.

not

art, this is

is

chief func-

its

mere beauty of

is

language

definite

outline.

If

a sentiment be expressed and transmitted, the

medium of its

its

transmission will be entitled to

The language of

place as an art of form.

prose has not the power thus to express and transmit field in

sentiment, though

all

a rough sort of way.

must do, each

not, the other arts liar

may entitle its What prose canit

in its

pecu-

region, not, perhaps, without encroaching

Each

mutually.

art,

beginning with primordial

feelings, will translate

shades

a

in

more and more

constantly

refining

delicate

process, the

form always reacting on the sentiment and suggesting an advance.

This must account for the vagueness of the earlier great

in

Haydn

works

for instruments.

the pastoral element, the poetry of

nature, discovered anew,

is

unmistakable, as

the peculiar playfulness of his humor.

the appearance of

humor of any kind

in the eighteenth century

is

utterly inconceivable 30

N

it

is

In fact, in

music

as absolutely

as anything can be under the sun.

how

But even

new

Imagine

would have been

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING many

to the long line, stretching through turies,

cen-

of the worthy fosterers of music in the

Church.

The

be intended by the the

by

sonata was said

first

a

German

critic

to

to

show

in

earliest writers

movement what they could

second what they could

feel, in

the last

how

The

sim-

glad they were to have finished. plicity is

of

this interpretation

accurate

—emphasizes

do, in the

—and

no doubt

the vagueness of the

men

In the hands of great

real sentiment.

it

the form very soon attained a

much more

dig-

nified plan.

In technicalities

There

is

no value

the essence in

a clear view of the

dimmed by

is

analysis in

general

often lost.

Yet

itself.

purpose

a glance at those elements

is

not

which

have in them more than mere technical value.

The

question

is

not merely what

is

the general

symphony, but what is the special value of the accepted model in carrying And, as has been said out this purpose.

purpose of the

above, the

first

requisite in the listener

intelligent grasp

In short, what

is

an

of the work. is

the essential of the

mentioned sonata form

;

31

much-

of the outline of the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING movements indeed, of the structure of whole? A few relentless wherefores will

other the

;

Nor can

bring us to the right point of attack.

answer

the

lie

of

statement

a technical

in

theme, of development, of tonality, and so on.

But the one

clear

and

an historic view, where we see

phony



first

is

ment

The But and is

a

:

in

is

which

is

cast the

first

in

is

calm

is

of no

It

move-

less dignity.

complete contrast with the

the stirring progress of the

first

mood

has ascended.

in the verses

natural utterance.

Nowhere

It

level to It

not need the discussion of the other.

of statement

stress

first.

from the high

lyric utterance

which the

its

is

the serious burst of aspiring thought.

strife,

plicity



called the sonata form.

second, to be sure, it

of the sym-

stress

most absolute music

indeed, of

mould

the

main

place, the

centred on what

is

each cardinal element.

real raison d'etre—J-of

In the

by the need^the

grateful approach

does

Sim-

of a song is

is

the depth

of genius of the highest master better shown than in the Andante,



that profound,

broad

sympathy of Beethoven, distinct from the statuesque pathos of Haydn, or the stately grace of Mozart. Here was reflected Beethoven's 32

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING highest

most

trait,

that

In the third phase the feeling

strongly.

of relaxation

which bound men to him

is

undoubted, and,

form, even in the highest

The mood

the dance.

its

based on

flights, is

has passed from the

and spring through pathos

spirit's stir

In

fittingly, the

to

humor.

of

original conception this effect

relief,

of restraint from the tension of the early movements, was

continued in the

A

last.

form

peculiarly fitting for careless joy existed in the

Rondo, where the melody appeared and vanished with graceful interludes, which later developed into lesser tunes. Discussion was supplanted by a constant, playful alternation of the various melodies. As the symphony grew a more serious utterance of poetic feeling, the last

and

movement



often rose to a second climax

here appears the

of detail

—the rondo

meaning of form and

yielded then to the Sonata

type.

What,

then,

was

are the elements

expression

of

this sonata its

power

form

for this

What

?

new

poetic

?

Again, in the historic view,

it

is

at

once

amusing, pathetic, and enlightening to see the 3

33

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING which preceded the great discovery. In Bach's time the approved form was the suite of dances, transplanted from the itinerant struggles

new

street-players to the

At

piano-forte.

clavichord or newer

best this

was a mere

series

of

unrelated dances, idealized, to be sure, with ex-

pansion and polyphonic treatment.

It

was the

holiday music of the learned musician, his only secular vent for a

;

and

it

afforded the special form

kind of public tournament between

players and composers.

rival

But, with the best inten-

was over it the stamp of the Church

tion to be worldly, there

stern,

ascetic, intellectual

spirit.

What was

the

reaction of

treatment which

must answer the reaction of secular

The

feeling

?

Church Imforms, was an unrelieved monothemism. pressed with the traditional simple theme of peculiar quality, as in the strict

counterpoint,

lacked the

men

artistic

could not escape

is

that,

The

unless

we can

not grasp the

full

itself

meaning of 34

mystery,

was not

clear.

we

can-

the sonata

and

see the very need,

symphony.

ele-

not to speak of the

eventual solution, the need

And

they

;

conception of the dual

ment, of balance, of contrast. the strangeness,

it

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING was felt, there must be rebellion against the Church process, no more learned counterpoint; no textual theme frugally sounded without harmonic surroundings, like the verse of a sermon no eternal ringing of In a general way,

it



;

its

doom of dogma

relentless burden, like the

without a hint of repose, of cadence,

—on and

on, the voices ever multiplying the warning

phrase to a final massive climax of solemn

Away

architecture.

with

it all

!

new

be no taint of fugue in the

There must

The

spirit.

whole machinery of church forms seemed designed and fitted to an impersonal, a selfeffaced contemplation of high

of the utmost solemnity. Church,

men

dare to be

individual joy

;

Here, out of the

happy and gay

in their

they dare to celebrate the woods

and the green things of the a complete

dogmatic truth

They want from the damp air

earth.

summer holiday

of the Church.

Now as

of

see the features

a better

technical

new

new

expression

feeling.

There

and simpler meaning

for our

they carry out this

must be

this

big words.

What

seems the

the most significant, the most potent, sense of

is

first,

a clear

harmonic residence, what the musicians 35

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING call tonality, as against

the gray color, in the

fugue, of a key vague until the end.

seems, there

is

it

the impulse to utter a sense of

worldly repose, in the fugue,

strife in

Again,

defiance of the

which knew no

constant rest until

the final end.

Nowhere

is

this contrast clearer

than in the

piano works of Sebastian Bach and of Do-

menico

They were

Scarlatti.

almost to the year. the earthly

new

clear

in

But Scarlatti had caught sunny Italy, under the in-

of his father Alessandro, the founder of

spiration

the

spirit

contemporaries,

aria.

Bach, somehow, could never get

of the shadow of the

German

his

the pale

hue of meditation.

dance-moods

cloister.

are

With

the

still

o'ercast with

He

was glancing

out of doors through the windows of his study.

The

was roving with a firm foot in the fields he was ringing out his tintinnabulations with clearest note of tonal serenity and cerHe tainty, still always the same one tune. no could have but a single idea at a time Italian ;



;

broad sense of balance, of contrast, of perspective.

On

such a basis there could never

structure of

not

much

serious dignity.

all.

36

But

rise

a

this is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

We

must

see, too,

the strange alternative of

the qualities of Bach and of Scarlatti : of vague

and of

reflection

tonal

clear

seems that tonality must be

The

of depth.

simplicity.

the expense

at

borrowed

voices were

harmonic subservience, and must cease to cuss the

theme.

In a sense

an ideal sense, there was a temporary

But

of dignity.

for dis-

they were de-

graded from counsellors to train-bearers. in

It

this simplicity

was

So, loss

after all a

gain.

So

far the

elements are the same of the other

secular moulds, of the song, the dance

the rondo.

We

and

have not yet come to the

was a reconciliation of the various needs first, of this tonality, the sense of certain harmonic locafinal typical trait

of the

strict sonata.

It

:

tion

;

second, of relief from

melody, a sense of duality

;

monotony of single finally,

which had been too completely

of a quality

lost

with the

fugue.

And

this

very stirring search has shown what

a peculiar place the fugue

filled.

Let us return,

for a thought, before the days

of unsung music.

Our

in

art

is still

walking hand

hand with her

older sister Poetry, but unmanageable, restless. 37

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING One day

melody

a master dreams his

instrument alone.

Now

it is

for the

clear that

music

must somehow atone for the new want of words. A song deprived of words is and remains incomplete. The clear meaning is gone, Here begins the there is mere vacant beauty. stir

And

language of pure tones.

for a definite

none of the older forms were the achievement of music itself, its selffound utterance. They are foreign they bethis

is

significant, too

:

;

longed to poetry, like the song, or to the dance, like the minuet.

See,

therefore,

new sonata form is actually the first mode of expression of the pure art of

this

// says something in

From

mere

how

proper music.

tones.

another point of view, the half-con-

want of the early masters in their search was this they were dissatisfied with mere lyric burst, mere singing of the tune

scious

:

they

must

talk

after all,

now

must get some-

they

felt

that

mere theme or text

progress until

which,

it;

They quickly

where.

This

about

you discussed

;

it.

element of discussion, in a sense,

had been

melody was, there was no of progress,

lost in the fugue,

achieved in a novel way, was the crowning

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING virtue of the

new form

So here

phony.

the problem

is

and sym-

for sonata :

to express

the definiteness which had been lost with the

words

to

;

go beyond mere

striking

of the

melody to start the pace for a genuine art, which, beyond creating pretty phrases, will find a language for ever deepening and ever differ;

entiating

shades

of

feeling,

approaching the

clearness of verbal thought.

structure of the

form,

which

whole work

will

will lie the art-

and

build

the

Finally, in

co-ordinate

in

supplementary moods one homogeneous expression of a great emotional idea.

How

this special

purpose of discussion was

carried out, the

need being

seen

too,

;

further,

tonality,

how

clear, will

each

be

easily

element

of duality, of discussion



—of

reinforced

the other.

The

final

achievement was

this

A

melody begins with clear intonation of the key, by harmonic sounding of the main chord. It is succeeded presently by a second, which is contrasted in every way, in character, in movement, and in key. Now see how duality



helps tonality.

Black

is

black, after

So the

in contrast with white. 39

all,

only

original tonic

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING key

not really

is

departure into

clear, until a

the complementary dominant, with the second

Thus

melody.

the contrast, with well-marked

cadence, sharpens the effect of each.

When there

the

two melodies have been

of course, a sojourn, a cadence,

is,

complementary key, the dominant. itself invites a

return

At

or tonic.

is

the

:

assured

characters

they act and talk

;

repetition

the

are

beauty are

in

from really

now

;

the several musical ideas are

of climax and beauty

new

story

described

discussed, singly or together, to

often of

This

to the original,

by a

And now

beginning.

begins

homeward

in the

the same time, the clearness of

stated melodies

the

stated,

;

new

surprises

they take on the guise

melodies, or melodies of kindred suggested.

Thus

(not

to

bind

beyond the hint of analogy) the themes pass from the mere phase of lyric utourselves

terance to that of epic narrative, not without

strong dramatic power. close

;

and

see

Now

once more the

must come

the

interrelation

key and theme, of tonality and

duality.

of

The

melodies reappear in the original order, but with

change tonic.

key for the second must close in the And, again, the balance is maintained

in

;

40

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING for,

while the earlier melody had the advantage

of

first

word

thus a

symphony

means a sounding

did, all

and

has

the last

in this, the principal tonal territory.*

And cally,

appearance, the second

in

(which, erymologi-

together, using, as

it

the resources of instrumental sound,

Beethoven's Ninth even pressing voices had, from the time of Mozart,

into service)

the ambitious purpose of expressing a sort of

modulation through three or four moods of

one dominant

feeling.

I

ing" for lack of a better. this

purpose

view of

life,

sometimes colored

use the word " In is

its

feel-

highest phase,

a kind of poetic

by what

is

at the

time the

individuality of the composer.

* The

melody with the tonic most sonata movements prevailed over the

association of the

key has in

first

need of contrast of tonality. of melodies has the

second

in the

first

In these the

final

statement

in the tonic, followed

same key.

4i

by the



Ill

HAYDN Perhaps the distinguishing of

Haydn

after

is

a

certain

and charm

out-of-doors

feeling

church or school, a dancing exuberance

of childlike humor and

mans

trait

hilarity,

(what the Ger-

Haydn

call Ausgelassenheit.

And we must mark

this note.

express this feeling

never lost

that

it

was to

and foremost that the

first

symphony was invented. Later, to be sure, the symphony and fugue approached each other were even blended



in spirit

and

in form.

This discovery has a double view,

Haydn was

the

symphony

he was the

poet.

In

:

him

first

to put a

feeling



one, that

mood

into the

first

great secular tone-

first

mastered form, a

feeling of pure joyousness

;

yet he could rise

to a serious height of solemn devotion.

There

was not the subsequent note of defiance, of awful depth or sublimity. But Haydn had a serene profundity of his own, and, moreover, a true lyric beauty. 42

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

other view

is

the purpose of the action from

stern

the original simplicity of

symphony,

its

note of

re-

complexities to a holiday

no breath of philosophy in mere childlike abandon. This the beginning, finds naturally its symptoms and proof in the early form and treatment. And yet we should be farthest from the truth if we ascribed to

mood.

There

is



Haydn

that the change in the

The

a lack of mastery.

was one of

striking fact

feeling,

is

clearest

voluntary simplicity of the masters

could, at the proper hour, write the

found counterpoint.

who

most pro-

Indeed, the tradition of

the older school compelled a thorough training

of the musician.

But the earliest bent of structural creation was in a horizontal direction, not vertical was in melody and outline rather than in simultaneous

polyphonic

combinations.

As

soon as the form was achieved, the deepening both senses, began with Haydn.

process,

in

In

fact,

Haydn

his

first

greatest

in his

symphony after

the

long career (he wrote

before Mozart's birth, his latter's

death)

shows very

well the various phases of the whole

ment. 43

move-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING In his later works the depth of treatment,

united to light simplicity,

is

most wonderful

a

blending, a most delightful alternation of

seri-

ous playfulness and playful seriousness.

It is

impossible to see

how Haydn

can

fail

to be

perennial.

Aside from his undoubted absolute value,

Haydn's importance

in

is

some degree

historic

in his position as the pioneer in the expression

in

great

A

clear

art-works of purely secular

outward sign of

this

of the modern orchestra.

is

It

to say that the orchestra, with

of

strings,

was the

is

feeling.

his creation

not unjust

predominance conception

original

of

Haydn.

With Bach spirit

the orchestra belonged to the

of the Church, of frugal Protestant piety

with Handel

it

was devoted

;

to the dramatic

celebration of biblical themes, or, as in Gluck,

With

was stiff, undeveloped, and harsh, under the shrill domiWith nation of the classic pipe and reed. of mythological heroes.

all it

Haydn, as the strings uttered the soft hum of woods and meadows, it was a joyous, exultant praise

the

of nature.

titles

And

see the significance

of

of Haydn's oratorios, the " Creation," 44

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the " Seasons

;"

contrast

them with

earlier sub-

jects.

But with

this relative position, there

all

no question of Haydn's absolute

is

His

value.

may

have a mock-heroic, a pseudo-

pathetic air;

but his andantes are true lyric

adagios

feeling.

With Haydn

the

symphony began

as salon

amusement, and soon reached the height of poetic expression of exuberant joyousness, of

humor, and of a

playful

utterance. sity

With Mozart

and broadened

tations

it

in scope.

deepened

step over

We shall see

both masters.

still

In

in inten-

Losing the

of bourgeois rmmor and joy,

more cosmic view. music

certain idyllic, lyric

it

limi-

took a

later a great

Haydn and Mozart

had strongly the entertaining

atti-

was there principally to give pleasure. There was no suggestion of prophecy, of warning, of defiant proclamation of truth in general,

tude

;

it

or of any definite truth in particular.

Music

did not, as yet, in Beethoven's words, " strike

fire

from the soul of man." Haydn's holiday spirit, complete in contrast with the Church school,

was limited

in

comparison with his successors.

In Mozart a classic depth and balance was 45

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING gained. serenity.

Boyish exuberance yielded to maturer Depth of pathos was first explored./"'

Haydn's was the song of the child Mozart'£ of the youth Beethoven's of the man. When, ;

;

in

Beethoven, feeling controls the form, the

advance

in poetic expression

Haydn's

as great as

original step.

Symphony

in

(Peters Edition,

Haydn must always Adagio,

Often

it

which

is

of passion seems

as

D.

No.

3.)

begin with the grave

solemn

seems hardly meant

as

is

it

short.

One

seriously.

cannot help thinking of the king of France

and twenty thousand men. striking

of

attitudes, to

bars, into the sprightliest

Presto.

run

All this majestic off,

after

a

few

of Presto themes

Strings

f=Srfc_*__

The

46

bass, as comr.ionly

,

doubled below.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

71

jr

i

reversed later, as countertheme Tutti.

kiHtM ±-M=£ 1-2 E^ ^~*1

r=r sf

*/

SeCT

t sf

The ascending melody in

All

sf

thirds.

so perfectly that every one

fits

is

uncon-

sciously dancing alone, yet in perfect agreement

with the

rest.

Everything

is

so simple,



the

theme, the rhythm, the most obvious modulations, that

one cannot see the secret of the

eternal freshness.

In the most natural way, a

new melody and rhythm 47

is

made from

the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING countertheme by merely shifting the accent, using question for answer.

The second melody

no

brings

great change

of feeling: Strings.

i^

£*S£

r

f~'IS

p

m

£

t-

"N

IX

-n-n-

-3-S4-

1 f-

No

one has succeeded, and,

childlike,

withal,

hilarious even, yet

Haydn,

like

fundamental

cosmic

;

light

in

being

joyful,

;

and simple,

with pervading complexity. After statement and repetition of melodies, the Presto continues, according to tradition, to discourse

on the second theme.

Here we may

expect the highest polyphony, or contrapuntal discussion between the voices

disappointed.

As

;

and we

are not

in string quartet, the violins

each have their say on the text of the melody,

—now ruption,

the

successively, or,

fagots

now by

alternate

again, in dual agreement.

put in

their 48

word, then

inter-

Later all

the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING woodwind jolly

finally the brass

;

countertheme, with

With higher octaves

^_

-

all

much

-

join in the

irresponsible

n

1^

i

jg/4

.

and

i

J^

I

V4

-J

.-

s I

A

•V

Strings doubled below.

merriment

Harmony

in higher wind.

in related phrases.

of melodies

subject,

with

turns, against all

developing episode of the second

and ends, naturally though

final

re-entrance

in original order begins in the ac-

customed way, but suddenly rule, into the

The

irregularly,

singing of the principal theme.

whole movement shows

how

the masters

The

who

moulded the forms of the symphony, were, in a way, least bound by its shackles, had the most perfect freedom of utterance. The Andante is German folk-song of the purest and simplest. It seems that the most natural intervals and harmonies are the proper utterance of the Germans all other " folk" must take up with the strange and eccentric. The nearer they are akin to the Germans, the more they share in the rights of the tonic and dominant. Like many of Haydn's slow movefirst



;

ments, this 4

is

largely a variation of one melody, 49

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

^ Violins

Andante.

± P *-*-i p 4=:

if

^a-*



r=Fr

r

-i»



p-

Strings and Fagots.

Egg

¥

B^

e —

with but a single foreign episode,

The

latter, in

its

its

pom-

of principal and

lesser

fragmental phrases,

pous and eccentric

stride

Minore.

the

figures, in the general clatter

and

seems

noise,

intended mainly to give relief to the simplicity

of the principal melody,

—perhaps

to

add a

tinge of dignity.

Haydn's scherzos always have a strong " out of school" it

is

feeling,



a short recess.

this

one especially

The themes of

;

the

only

two

middle movements are plainly discernible at 50

:

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING first

hearing.

But mark,

after the first burst

of

the whole orchestra Menuetto.

Allegretto.

Full orchestra.

the playfulness of the answer, whispered strings

and

by

flutes

Doubled below.

and the comic mocking of basses and in the

first

cadence.

The Trio

in

trebles

its first

eight

somewhat of a mystery why Haydn should have used what seems the most modern of bizarre effects, a continuous bars has always been



sounding of the tonic chord

in

the strings,

melody in the flutes, which almost craves a momentary glimpse of the dominant. with

a

5'



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Haydn

probably wanted a touch of the hurdygurdy. It must be well marked that the second time he clearly yields to the demands of the dominant, though still keeping a tonic pedal-

The development of

point.

the Trio

is

much

more important than of the Scherzo, discoursing on a more suggestive theme, a phrase from the Trio melody

^

9

of a humor and

It is full

St.

spirit

of

its

own.

Strange to say, the Finale (marked Vivace) quite the

most

Recess

quite over

is

serious phase of the

not to say church. trained

sounds

choir, are

much

Finale.

like a

Vivace.

;

we

are

For the striking

back

is

symphony. in school

violins, like a well

up a melody

good old chorale

:

that

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING 3j=g=»fc

^

&&

>r -#-

*



i

m

?3E±

^N

Simply cadence, sure

stated, it

is

we know

repeats

which

it,

is

strictly repeated as if to

to give

dinal theme, in

who

all

unction, and

serious

warning of the great sermon

We are

to follow.

mainly because

make

like the preacher

It is

it.

text with

his

states

without a note of extended

it

is

its

sure

it is

not sonata-form

;

a rondo, the car-

constant rounds, never

us forget the text of the sermon.

After

lets

some

playing of themal phrases, there comes one

of those dynamic passages, where

make

all

join to

a noise, and finally drop exhausted into

whereupon the strings, with a little help from the wood, gently toss about snatches of the melody, and the rest pitch in again in

a cadence

;

general turbulence.

At

last

the strings rehearse

the theme in really serious manner, with but slight

obligate*

variation. 53

The

rest,

too, join

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING properly and respectfully in singing the in

its

Soon comes another

original harmonies.

of those

terrible phases,

Papa Haydn

another Minore, where

so hard to look very fierce,

tries

without anything special to say eral muttering,

hymn

;

with the same old

merely genfaces.

We

know it is only to break the more pleasantly into his own benignant smile. Here is the fugue, which we knew was coming from the emphatic way the theme was first enounced. With such a theme it could

all

not be

resisted.

It

begins in the

first

violins,

with the seconds tripping in obligato behind, before,

and

all

around, until they finally take

up the theme, and the Best of rest all

their

all is

turn, too.

come

the cellos

Of

play about.

at

trial

when

violas " hold the candle." in

and the

course, the violas have

Finally, the

wood make

the theme, while the violins

a

go on

without attending to their ineffective attempts,

and

At

finally last

with

all

run away from them on a side path.

the whole orchestra joins in the fugue possible magnificence

until the last verse,

as at

which

first.

54

is

and solemnity,

sung once more

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Symphony

in

(Peters Edition,

Ek. No.

I.)



Haydn's beginning Adagio, very beautiful yet somehow it seems a mere w attention," or the formal prayer on entering church or it is like the child's game, where Here, again,

is

;

;

Adagio.

P

serious pretence but leads to frivolous surprise.

Perhaps

it

does give a certain serious tone to

But pathos was never Haydn's strong point. So he is glad to give way to the merry dance of the Allegro, like a monk's disguise thrown off by the dancer. Of course, our symphony has not quite emerged from the whole.

the frivolous stage.

The melody and

is

at

once delightful

in itselfj

promising for " talking about" later 55

on

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

m JTL

Allegro con spirito.

all in

Haydn's

nl&

favorite strings, while the

wind merely answer

in a noisy

rather unimportant way, with

echoes,

—very

fagots,

and

and then

all

m

Fagot.

as

when

and

oboes,

Woodwind and Strings.

-^-•fft

is

calls

sound the theme,

softly

:** There

loud

answer in frightening chorus:

P Strings and

SE

acclaim in a

playfully, too, as

strings

wood-

^c+

M

3

a queer bustling figure

though we had heard 56

it

before

:

which looks

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING d?

Bz=
ft£juJ

CZJf

Bass doubled below.

we are sure we have not. At last, a dancing melody comes along

but

not too foreign a key, quite as a merry

in

after-

thought, and sets the whole orchestra dancing

with

it

ti.

^S8: P

44-

^es: rfczf: /ZZZ.

i

^

44

%i±*

^@

n j? ^^ i

S3 *

-q

i

1

-

57

i

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING And now,

after repeated

statement of tioth

melodies, begins Haydn's typical phase of ar-

Complexity usually sugBut with Haydn it is the

chitectural lightness. gests seriousness.

mood

of old madrigals, of general merry-

Yet

making. analyzed,

the depth of treatment,

greater than

is

of fugues

;

when

only

it

is

spontaneous, and therefore the more perfect.

There

a delicious conflict of rhythm

is

so profound

is

the architecture that

abandon minute perception.

We

;

and

we must

can merely

enjoy the general daze of varied harmony and structure.

Again enters the curiously familiar strain which we cannot place more of playful and sometimes solemn repartee of higher and lower strings on the main theme introducing, again, ;

;

with delicious surprise, the dance of the second

melody

new

in a

light,

while the

woodwind

are

pertly talking back.

Then

orthodox simplicity the melodies

in

enter in the

strange

original

order, until

Out of a noisy tumult,

happens.

monkish melody is sung

closing in hushed cadence, the

reappears

;

the

And now we

—something

first

see

figure

again.

the secret of the strange 58

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING melody; former,

it

for,

following immediately upon the

proves to be nothing but

its

The

ing echo in very quick rhythm.

monk and

between

ness

appear until the strain

rung

cessive variations, penseroso

the whole,

he

is

it

and

in

like-

not

the suc-

allegro.

On

does seem that Haydn, though

charged here with

again sacrificed

humor

does

dancer

is

mock-

serious

to his

all

half unconsciously,

intent,

mood of like

has

friendly

an amiable

person turning off a severe word with a pleasantry.

But the Andante solemn.

is,

for

The playing by

Haydn, unusually strings,

however,

some of the stateliness that Papa Haydn would almost " Now we must be very deliberately assume restores the typical quality.

:

serious."

Andante. Strings.

There

is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING But

it

has the

which marks

fine,

all

strong diatonic simplicity

great music

and

;

this appears

especially in the major guise, later on. It is all

The man

first,

a series of variations on this melody. in the major, has

much of

that Ger-

simplicity of intimate sentiment.

In the

Strings doubled above in the woodwind.

sf

sf

second, there

is

a curious dramatic effect of

the original minor, a

melody

in the

by

a simple addition of

The

oboe.

third

is

a jolly

version of the major theme, in quick-tripping runs, with a

few warm, friendly chords

in the

up the temperature. The next is heroic, somewhat a la Chevalier Gluck; but our hero is always making desperate attempts

horns, to keep

to stand stiffly upright

;

he

is

constantly un-

bending, and betraying his natural kindliness. 60

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING But he

is

doing his best to look ferocious, and

the next minute he sweetly.

Now

is

the

apologizing

all

the

more

major alternative has a

special pastoral feeling, with the

melody

in the

oboes, and counterphrases in the flutes, which later join the

The end steal in

main song. impressive.

is

First

the voices

one by one, making, unconscious one

of the other, a harmony of four melodies.

Then they spruce uniform, in

up, and

full pride

nificence, not

of

all

their

march in best combined mag-

without an occasional lapse into

quaint naturalness of feeling.

Here, in the third movement,

minuet feeling

;

;

the pretty, prim quaint-

with naive reiterations of the

high and low Menuetto.

the ideal

the dear, old-fashioned stateli-

ness and formality ness,

is

last phrase,

:

Tutti (the melody an octave above in the flutes).

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING fc±£5 EE

-fV^-

C#--#

9

f

J

f5>-r

fez

"N

J.-J-

a

J

he

'-+

'

1

x

^ Q— !•

=-

But presently

much

it

breaks

into

a

treatment

too broad for the old minuet, where the

voices, instead

of strumming

stiffly in

rhythmic

accompaniment, answer back with the theme in their

own

independent way.

The Trio seems the rigid dance.

a flight from the restraint of

In a gracefully free melody,

indeterminate in tune and rhythm

r-fcfe

53

-m

Er5 r

3

p 62

r

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the strings enter in turn, on their will.

a

It is

;

sweet

interlude in the dance

little

quiet tete-h-tete

own

at the

end formalities and

;

a

atti-

tudes are again assumed.

In the Finale, one of the broadest of Haydn's rondos, there

is

From

duality.

from the beginning a the

phrase there

first

is

fine

the

Every voice comes in with something important to say, not a mere polite accompaniment of " Yes, yes," " So say stamp of highest mastery.

we

So

all."

there

is

from the

which almost makes us must be. At the outset melodies,



start

fear

a profundity

what the climax

two one a fundamental motto there are

distinct in the

horns, the other a gay, careless phrase in the strings Allegro con

spirito.

J=4

ST\

-&-

-zy—

j=Ud -&



Lg:

Horns. Violins.

-J-

|pl

i

-&-

* 63

f



-

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

tA-J J771Sat j—j* y- T^f g-f*g= Clarionet. j^- j-

as tr

i-,

'

M

'

I

Then, while these third

ringing in our ears, a

are

But

adds to the sweet bewilderment.

before the third

appears, the various

" Three Blind

enter in

Mice"

strings

fashion, each

without waiting for the other to

finish,

and,

more wonderful, they sing the answer in the same way. Ever and again, in the true rondo spirit, the friendly motto comes, in highest simplicity.

what

is

There

a big, ponderous episode, where the

is

motto, sounded loud, does not stop in

strict

conclusion, but, like a philosophic proposition,

deduces

itself at

The whole

length.

is

like

dogma solemnly proclaimed on church organ (in

melody

the bass the second

where over shines and

all

is

marching),

lesser interests the great truth

dims the others

Higher wood and strings doubled below

in the brass.

—J-rJOj-

4-

jOL

-&-JZ

1

-&-

/x Cellos

',

r

violas,

r

j~,



r'(V r'fT?r-r

and fagots doubled above 64

in clarionets.

*

;:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

aiding*

m j

dt tJ

E=?"

w

em-*-

-

-*$>-

r 4-

r

^

sMsi

£

PHF

B

Basses added.

But with Haydn the earthly,

To

this

human

never

after

lasts

long

quickly breaks through.

the duet of motto and

a smooth-running ently,

mood

in

obligato

melody strings.

a noisy close of the

is

added Pres-

whole

or-

comes what seems the gem of the whole. In simple monomelodic statement it seems entirely new, sonorously sung by the chestra,

cellos,

while the upper strings strike the chord

Strings. I

II

I

#-—

P 65

Cellos.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING w

— — —9~ -Tp—9*—d*—9+w

w

us.

Oboe.

W

£

#—£-

*=*

]

-3---

dt

""N

There

is

a complete lyric contrast with the

The

former dramatic polyphony.

answered by

flutes,

cellos

are

and then, again replying,

soar into one of those romantic modulations

which we thought were of a

later master.

It

foreshadows clearly the poetry of Schubert's Unfinished.

Then through a noisy chorus of lesser importance by a quiet cadence, like an informal conversation, we come back to the original But here is still more and architecture,

duet of motto and melody.

more bewildering more massive, overpowering,



until suddenly re-

appears the single romantic figure in a

At

color of light.

however, there

is

the

new

end of the phrase,

something new,



the round

bassoon quietly chimes a note of assent, almost too unimportant there are

two

to

mention

instead of one. 66

;

but, after

all,

Again the Schu-

a

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING makes us think of

bert modulation, that

and Death and

king

claim

;

us

our

to

out this

reinforced

is

so that the

;

loud ac-

original

in this, the real return to the

thing

A

key and again the delicious duality. But

brings

beginning

Maiden,

the

Erl-

;

all

first

first

part, every-

the reserves are called

seemed but preliminary to

magnificence and to the enchanting con-

fusion. see the

Once more the Schubert melody. And number of mere strumming beats we

must wait for the melody, just so many. We must have good patience, and be ready at the



exact time

;

we

otherwise

are out

of tune,



example of the musician, the unconscious arithmetician. Twelve meaningless strums, and fine

then the melody, divinely ordained to just

at

beautiful

At

this

Now

moment.

duo singing

there

come

is

more

in friendly quarrel.

the end, like a blessing, the motto

broadly

sounded

flutes, as if

by

all

the

they really meant

it

wind

but

67

the

as final conclu-

sion, while the strings are loyal to their

counter-tune.

is

wordly

IV MOZART Until to-day, Mozart's greatness has been unquestioned. tion

It

devolves upon our genera-

uphold him against voices that with

to

faint praise or slurring epithet are seeking to

him to a mere historic shelf. Mozart suggests the question which con-

relegate

Art between perfect form or

stantly arises in

beauty of outline, and intensity of emotional

Where must the stress be ? Is he the master who charms with external beauty

content. greater

and cunning note

is

skill in detail,

Or

impossible?



is

to

whom

it

the poet

a harsh

who

recklessly breaks the fetters of form, ruthlessly violates sacred

canons

with discord, and yet

meaning, a tion

and

;

fills

vital feeling

action.

who

The

shocks our ears

us with the sense of

which impels question

is

of the kind that can be answered is

to

We

some extent

to resolu-

perhaps not directly. ^It

a matter of temperament.

can conceive of great poets of both kinds. 68

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Romantic cige to decry the Classic. The same question arises between Schumann and Mendelssohn, between Tennyson and Browning. Nor must it be solved. It is

the fashion of a

Rather

is it

important not to rush impetuously

to a conclusion it

on the question of the ultimate purpose

bears

of Art, and

may

it

From

here.

Yet

which unjustly excludes.

be well to take some side

Aristotle to a very recent time

it

has been thought that beauty was the one aim

of Art,

its

was more natural

an age that knew chiefly

in

the plastic arts of sculpture

There

lies

This

creation the only function.

why

the reason

and

architecture.

the transgressions of

a Beethoven were so bitterly resented.

was not

beautiful, he

Beethoven, mainly,

beauty

of Art the

is

is

Through

was nothing. has

it

merely the means

become ;

If he

clear

that the chief

that

end

the communication of feeling through

medium of works of beauty

;

that beauty

indispensable as test of true feeling

is

;

that high

thought compels a noble utterance.

But the

feeling

is,

after

pression there

all,

may

the

main end

;

for

be a temporary

its

ex-

hiatus*

a

violation of aesthetic sense, in order to deepen,

by

contrast,

the

final 69

effect.

The element

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of sequence, as

of musical

paramount,

how

not supreme.

if

It

same passage may be

the

one connection, impossible thing

has

sense,

in the idea, the

lies

clear

is

beautiful

in

Every-

in another.

intent

arisen

nothing

;

in

the absolute independent beauty of separate

sounds.

But,

may

*» it

must always be remembered,

violation

—only by

never be in ignorance of rule,

the master who,

knowing

its

reason and

spirit,

has a higher purpose in his conscious transgression of the

letter.

It is certainly

unquestionable that mere cun-

ning of workmanship can never, assurance of highest

in itself,

In so far as this

art.

be is

commonly the basis of Mozart's supremacy as master, we must withhold our homage. But, in

there

reality,

is

a better

Mozart

reason.

does not stand simply for graceful perfection

of

detail

and outline

works the

;

there

is

which gives

spirit

beauty, including with the

expressed in his to all

life

humor of

a

this

Haydn

something of the cosmic scope of a Shakespeare, to

whom

he

is

often likened.

completeness of form

is

of the breadth of

sympathy.

his

70

typical

His very

and expressive In

Bach the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING broadest view of the religious spirit finds utter-

ance in the highest development of the Church style, strongest in resistance to

Mozart crowns the

poetic emotion.

secular outburst, deepening

humor, adding a serious, heroic note which Beethoven afterwards pathos, idealizing

its

expanded.

its

The symphony

masters from the stage of

passed

amusement

in

these

to poetic

expression and the utterance of a stern message.

We

remember the note of simplicity of Haydn, in natural reaction from the complexity of the Church school. It is very important to see that this in no wise suggests a lack of learning; on the contrary, that it was a purely voluntary choice of a means of expression. Simplicity was necessary to express the

new

secular feeling,

and, furthermore, a

was needed to convey in absolute music the sonata what had before depended upon words, in the cantata. And, primitive clearness







then, the achievement of a to instrumental

new form,

music, involved a

proper

stress

on

horizontal structure, at the expense of the vertical,

of counterpoint.

Soon

these temporal needs were 71

filled.

The

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING melody or aria was attained, with full swing and clear tonality and, likewise, the basis of a form of wonderful fitness for the exposition and discussion of melodic thoughts. Now the note of simplicity had been rung enough. Even in Haydn we have seen a new profundity which somehow does not mar his childlike But Mozart had an altogether lightness. broader view and a profounder sense. He ;

reflects in

music the cosmic breadth and the

mystic depth of his great contemporary, the poet Goethe, and of the best

of

German thought

his time.

In Mozart the special prominence of any typical feeling

is

less striking

Therefore his music seems

But

this

intensity intensity

than in Haydn.

less

characteristic.

comes not so much from a lack of an equal as from greater breadth, in various moods.



Symphony

in

G

Minor.

(Breitkopf and Haertel, No. 40.)

\ Is

there

anywhere more poetry or

art,

01

more of the blending of both, than in this work of Mozart's? It is always a recurring question whether Mozart's symphonies are not 72

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the greatest, partly because of their very sim-

of

plicity,

childlike innocence of a bur-

their

den of meaning,

—because of

and formal perfection. this respect,

strife

and

It is

does seem that in

G

Minor

and beauty

is,

after

all

in the

strain,

;

purpose of

There

latter days.

beauty

of pure beauty, the

the highest of

paramount

It

their pure

is

art,

is

all,

even in these

a fine Hellenic lack of

a high serenity.

observable that Mozart's limitations do

not appear in themselves, but only in negative

comparison with other masters

;

and yet

very comparison some of the highest

The

in this

traits

ap-

symphonic mastery is hardest to describe. It may break upon us during But whatever it is, the course of this book. Mozart certainly possessed it in a peculiar degree. His was the time when pure beauty, unalloyed with pale thought or dim meaning or grim woe, was filling men's minds. Schupear.

bert's

Unfinished

period.

Symphony

falls

within this

•***

But the

G

true

special type

of this phase

is

Mozart's

Minor, which begins with the entrancing

melody,

like a

dashing brook in early spring,

with the delicacy of gentlest rain 73

»

#

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Allegro molto. Strings.

X,

a ^E

With lower W^VA /
octaves.

JDiJ»

» X

f

Oj •—

JO -#



p

t—Ji

—*_*



he

^

l^iU-£^

no lack of the foil of strong melodic contrast. But the motion and sequence of the whole is so subtly perfect that we There

is

cannot stop to label the themes. after the first

comes a

Violins sustained by

transitional

wood an

octave above

m^lLlXlll "N Doubled in octaves above and below.

74

Immediately

theme

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

that

more important than the

really

is

m

£

1-

regular

second, because

it

lends the quality of

ening lime.

is

curiously noteworthy that

It

any part

neither of the secondary themes has in the discussion after the repeat

which

is

melody.

stiff-

of

subjects,

on the text of the principal what might be called a live

entirely It

is

counterpoint, where the bass

is

as

individual

as the soprano, a real discussion, a very logi-

Here we are nearer the secret of true symphonic mastery, when, after the melodies have made cal

exchange of

their

retorts

and

repartees.

rounds and courtesies, the best

is

yet to

come.

\ Your

lyricist,

who expends

himself upon his

melodies, worries through the period of treat-

The

ment, the Durchfuehrung, as best he can. master

feels

the real purpose of themes 75

:

for

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Mozart's development

discussion.

ginning Allegro of the

G Minor

is

in the be-

not, as in the

Jupiter, peculiarly contrapuntal or architectural,

but

is

typically a discussion.

strange

It is

what

a dogmatic, pugnacious quality appears in so

theme by this alternative assertion between violins and bassos. Its peculiar beauty

graceful a

seems better

of

the simple, unchallenged song, after

all for

all strife is

^

over.

The Andante mood. first

the lighter retorts, best

fitted for

is

Mozart's most serious

in

Surely any musician, hearing

for the

time uninformed, would say Beethoven,

which again proves Mozart's surprising

that

it

After

depth.

Beethoven

in

all,

versatility

seems often

it

his profoundest

Mozart

as

yet.

He

As

is

cannot

must go down

with the nineteenth century on the classics.

feeling

We

grounded directly upon Mozart. shelve

and

the Finale of this

first

line

symphony

of is

prototype of Beethoven's Scherzo in the Fifth, so this

Andante

strikes the serious note

of the

slow movement of the same Beethoven sym-

phony. like

And

nowhere

the Finale of the Jupiter has save, perhaps, in 76

Brahms.

its

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING See

how

subtly the

melody

steals in,

almost

beyond exact quotation. It lies somewhere between the violin-voices, as they quietly enter in canon order, and the basses, in the graceful, mysterious curve of their ascent Andante. [In Strings

-XI

and Horns.] -=»-*-

X

ccrtLP f 11

dtfi:

7

5=£T«M 5

-1-1-

X

i

v=t=t

3t3t

s

^

1 8=t=

a But phetic

in

^ all

there

sternness

is

-1

±

1-

something of the pro-

which we think of

thoven as against Mozart.

To

be sure,

instantly relieved in the lighter answer

77

in

Beeit

is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

Is/ s/

1

«/

J

ff^-^g d but in

is

it

renewed with an added

ripieno voice

high violins over the recurring

the

first

melody.

The second melody its

has a tripping phrase in

constant wake, Strings.

which,

later,

added to the

solemn complexity.

mere

fine art,



It

is,

first,

increases the

after all,

more than

a broad, deep, poetic thought.

Or, rather, does not, in fact, art best express the real

profundity

?

78

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING main

After the clangor of discussion, the

melody It

with even greater solemnity.

steals in

grows ever more complex, more human,

more big with

meaning,

many

many

voices,

its

significant

in

its

phrases, all singing to

the same end. It

seems almost greatest of

certainly of Mozart's

mastery.



all

in point

There, as in the

Andantes



of depth and

movement of

last

symphony, is seen how by high and profound art you approach, ipso facto, nearer to the Jupiter

clear

meaning,

of the



at least, to a clear definition

We

feeling.

can understand Mendels-

sohn's remark that music

is

a

guage than prose or poetry. course,

it

more of

proportion as

lan-

This must, of

depend upon some such premises

that the highest in

more exact

as

and best of man's thought has

feeling than of it is

dogma

more precious

ble of statement in set terms.

it is

As

;

that in

less

capa-

part of this

musical language of feeling, counterpoint, such as this of Mozart's, illustrations liarly

It

a variety of symbols or

of the same idea

reinforcing,

harmonious

is like

in the

seems as

if

;

but they are pecu-

as they are simultaneous,

and

beauty of their union.

Mozart must have 79

lived in

*

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING these six weeks, in

which he wrote

his

three

greatest works, as never before or after.

Are

we

true

curious what his thoughts were

answer



is

The

?

symphonies themselves,

here, in the

than any verbal account that even

far better

he himself could give. /And

this

only leads us

back to the discussion we thought we had taken leave

With

all

of.

humor of

the bright

what a masterful ring dance,

perfect

Menuetto.

m I m

in

its

the Menuetto,

kind of Titans' heavy,

easy,

*:

I

F

:

i

t-

t

^^

f — P

3 •s

I

wood, and horns, with fuller harmony.

fcfe

yt

strange

Allegro.

/

strings,

A

!

£

~*1

For

just



*=p=*

f so

m ¥-*-

rf

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

—lacking

rhythm,

grace only if lightness be

necessary.

And

then at

Trio.

last



in the

Trio

—the purely

Strings.



S^ mm r=f fe±

pT

id^ f

mm m i

*=*

i T=f=m ^r^ r 1 1

Hal

:

"N

human,

all

^=f

r

r

i

tenderness, delicacy, especially in

the dainty ending Strings doubled above in woodwind.

i

4-

i a;

t

p

j. i-i-a-

i

£

-*-

8i

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

coincidence has often been mentioned

between the theme of

this Finale

and that of

Beethoven's Scherzo in the Fifth Symphony.* It

is,

to be sure, exact in the

But here

disregarding the rhythm.

With

portunity. is

all

the

our

man

literal

in

first,

way of looking

essence.

there

This

the wrongness of at

music, as

if

a

of notes merely because he was

to light

upon them.

the essence of music

mon

our op-

could have a monopoly or patent on a

succession first

things, and,

is

literal similarity

an absolute unlikeness

shows many

eight notes,

first

belief:

It

shows, too,

different

is

how

from the com-

how it is purely one of mood The Beethoven theme, with the

and feeling. grim irony of the dance-step nonce, in another key),

is

(to quote, for the

in austerest, sardonic

Allegro.

PP humor.

In Mozart, in "

purest playfulness.

common

Of what

the description

and quotation below.

82

it is

we know them, if we

use, if

the notes, can quote or even play * See

time,"

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING *ro Finale. Allegro

assai. assaz.

i

m

i

T 1/

Stri NGS.

£

-*

TO *

=j

P^-

s

—«^

E

f

t Tut

feE*^

ft",

w*7A harmony in higher wind.

*=#=?E fe

Jfc

lack the perception of feeling which

themes really antipodal. With Mozart,

identical it is all

makes

a jolly, wild revel of childlike joy, well

earned after the profound, serious absorption of

symphony.

the earlier

After the depths

of

the JVeltschrnerz, after big thoughts of a universe,

it is

good

to be dancing, like pure chil-

So the second melody Haydn humor.

dren.

is

Strings.

^-5U

i r-=* p

*=*=^^^53L

F3=F4

fcst

I

simplest

1^y^

iwt rnr\

mfp

I

I

I

^fe^^'

-<§-

T -*—

-^-

Was

in

--

there ever anything so brilliant as the

development.

Pompous, 83

eccentric

striding

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING about, as if terrible

and then



things

were impending,

the most impish dancing under the

very noses of the same figures that looked so

But soon the imps get

solemn.

in

a wild

maze of dance. We are dizzy looking at them we can no longer follow the leader. Each seems independent of all the rest, yet Somehow, they all they never even jostle. make a perfect picture they seem to dance as ;

;

complex whole, a simulation of wild Gradually they simmer down to a

a curious, disorder. lull.

It

all

ends in the joyous simplicity of

the beginning.

The

G

Minor does seem the greatest of all symphonies when we hear it. But, then, it is really the test of a symphony that you prefer it to all others when you hear it, and this must be an excuse for a subjective treatment.



There

is

a right and wrong, a false and

true in art, but there in

is

no necessary gradation

rank of the masterpieces.

The " Jupiter" Symphony,

in

C Major.

(No. 41 of Breitkopf and Haertel.)

Were Mozart and Haydn

as conscious

the high dignity and capacity of the 84

of

symphony

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING as

Beethoven

They worked towards

?

they were, in a sense,

But

period.

both

still

in

but

the formative

was, again, their

this

it,

strength,

of unconsciousness and of formal

in point

beauty.

The

contrast

We

Minor.

But

very complete from the

is

G

miss the fine depth of sentiment. there

instead

a

is

certain

breadth, profundity, and vigor.

intellectual

In nothing

is

the contrast sharper than in the general plan.

We

have seen the early climax of the

Minor, and the gentle descent In the Jupiter the

first

mere prelude of the

The tric

first,

three

G

in the Finale.

movements seem

last.

Allegro Vivace, begins with an elec-

burst of the

whole orchestra

in a sparkling

which with its inversions seems to unite the whole symphony in a common conception.

phrase,

Allegro vivace. Tutti.

X-

J

^rtz^F^ I

Doubled in upper and three lower

octaves.

no defined melody. It is all like a broad fanfare, to show the breadth of scope There

is

85

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and the is

intellectual pitch

of the whole.

There

a constant tendency to short, terse legends

Not

in tone.

key

forsaken

is

keen

until the is

air

of the original

there a lapse into gently

swinging melodies, of which the second,

in

a grateful gliding into a

more

more human, perhaps a more lous mood.

frivo-

particular,

is

placid, a

Strings

-

P

a

(the

melody

hfe

ifeg

in octaves).

j

f=* ^

i

ur

i

i

i

j

r

pizz.

M=M w

iij

J--*- JM±

,-:

P X.

533E •

f



1





,s

*— "

"

•*



=*

*

nn on

JT

*-

But the development begins in light humor, with charming counterpoint. And this shows 86

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING an innocence of anything profounder than a Neither the

vague cheeriness.

movement has

G as

the

profound feeling of the

And

proceeds.

theme

first

nor second

But the whole symphony deepens

Minor. it

the

first

Andante

is

so in the Andante, as

rather formal

and

stately in

cantabile.

Strings (muted).

*fe5

*

•i-

'

£

£

^

P

J

y

Tutti in octaves.

i '

%

fetr

—H— V=

=

p

B

f

s

£ Tutti

Jr *

J

5=

in octaves,

-J f

mood, the second ment:

its

is

87

fairly steeped in senti-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings (the melody reinforced

in thirds in the

wood).

1

e

3

u

r^-*

T?



J-iL^J-

p

zX mm

X,

3

$

i

i

1

X

i

Flutes and Horns.

zsm ^ Ni^crr^g^ J¥t

£+.

**£* £=rf if

^



Sl ff- ,TtfFr.rff g 88

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING



There begins the real song, the poetry of the story and from this point the treatment ;

of the

first

The

theme

is

richer

and

fuller.

charm of lightness and dainty swing, cannot compare with that of It is a pure the G Minor in vigor or depth. dance, while the other was more than was bargained

But there

Menuetto, with

all its

for.

in the Finale, the reverse

is

of the

G Minor,

the most thrilling architecture,

all

out

of a theme of four notes, united, augmented, Finale. Allegro motto. Strings.

diminished.

ment

is

The vagueness of

justified

;

the whole

is

the

first

move-

with a broadly

which is really much more Greek than Gothic. There is Jupiter Tonans. The view is always Olympian and manifold, taking on a great cosmic complexity. In the wake of the main subject come other phrases. poetic conception,

One

in the bass recalls the

whole work 89

beginning of the

F

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Woodwind with

&

octave below

and

3b

5t 5t -O-

~B

J}

&

/ Cellos,

=sy -&-

upper octave.

Violins with

f

above.

m M

^E

with violas above and basses above.

After a full cadence rings out what has been called the "

hammer theme,"

the " thunderer

—might be

called

:"

In strings and wood, doubled in octave below.

X,

^m

±^=± /

carried

on

in

two

voices,

X -*—

i

one a third above the

other.

At

the end of this rumbling energy in the

comes a fugal fabric in five voices from the strings on the motto,

forge of the gods separate

sung

in quiet fancy,

ting off the last

each entering voice shut-

word of 90

its

forerunner, thus

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING l-

-&-

i£=F

^ £j i fa£?:

III t

r~

r

Then echoes

$

± l ~

f

come

the violins

all

to

-

"-

jB--"

so

#^

g?

--

in,

from

tance

Then

is

to basso.

the blast of the full orchestra,

with the theme above and the below.

first

a

new

hammer

phrase

counter-figure of impor-

developed

^

r

-

/

if"

fc^-

s 2:

also entering fugally.

Then comes

the sudden change to the gentle

second melody,

still

in the violins.

But,

&

Strings.

:s£ -frl

Pimiuj -©-

91

^

nxt

see,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

it is

of the same

a stolen

rib.

and bone with the

flesh

Around

its

first,

disguised entrance

the former phrases are constantly hovering.

Presently there in

the

is

(inverted)

moment's

loss

a

compact

second

forceful passage

theme, without a

of melodic swing, without a

lamp

on the contrary, with constantly added strength and vigor, and a peculiar sense of economy and mathematical suspicion of the

perfection, so that

" unconscious

;

we cannot but

arithmetician."

recall

Now

the

follows

the most royal counterpoint, the sparks flying

from the shock of discord,

all

with surest touch

and perfect harmony.

The development more

{Durchfuehrung)

begins

But the counterpoint is so dazzling, so overwhelming, that only by intense expectancy, looking again and again, the reflectively.

92

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING sunlight

too bright, you can discern

is

the

components, shading the eyes and standing farther back. is

But perhaps the general dazzle

the real intent, rather than spelling out each

theme.

A

of hammer themes in contrary mo-

alternative

and a subtle insinuation of the motto

tion,

At

wonderful work, with the stunning

last

the motto appears boldly in

its

!

original

guise in the basses, with enchanting, Schubertlike

modulation from mystery to certainty.

At

the end, after a reprise in the respective

keys, there all.

The

is

the most marvellous episode of

motto, inversion, and diminution in

one, and the other

two themes, all in perfect harmony, are enough to give Bach a headache. There is an unquenchable thirst for new statements,

new

guises.

The

boldest intellectual span. as

conception It

is

of the

stamps Mozart's

one of the most broadly constructive minds

the world has possessed. plus ultra of Art.

93

It is

indeed the ne

BEETHOVEN

Two

great traits stand out as

we view

the

advance over the masters we have been considering,

by the one who

of secular expression,

To

if

stands at the height

not of

all.

use technical words seems like travelling

must always be explained. Yet there is a certain indispensable rough convenience about them. Development^ then, is, after all, that which gives life and reality to in a circle

;

for they

music, as to

all

human

thought.

It

seems

any one could make a tune by Then, thinking hard enough or long enough. it is always melody may be reminiscent But if you can talk with sequence partly so. and coherence, you are a master of the magic Bother language it is, then, all your own. you can say something logically, the theme, sometimes

as if

;

;



deductively, consecutively.

This

power

;

Beethoven

carried

to

Schumann developed 94

it

an

undreamt

later

wonder-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Sometimes it by comparison, Haydn and Mozart

fully in certain narrower lines.

seems as

if,

the melodic sections together

tied

;

or used

the devices of counterpoint, however master-

own

for their

fully,

sake

or, at

;

while

least,

they wrote with sequence, they did so with a certain consciousness, with

more emphasis on

utterance than on content.

In Beethoven, for

the

first

time, everything

becomes subordinate

to the expression of a great, continuous,

geneous thought or certain

feeling.

Still,

homo-

in all justice,

fundamental differences of the masters

must be reckoned with. Mozart liked perfection of form in itself; he had a keener sense than Beethoven for the beauty of the utterance.

He

did not, therefore, like Beethoven, rebel

against form for the sake of rebelling.

may

There

possibly be a tendency to consider each

succeeding master too distinctly as overshadowing those before him.

Mozart and Beethoven

were diametrically opposite

and the former to the latter.

is

in

temperament,

not merely a stepping-stone

In certain moods, Mozart reaches

an expression than which a more perfect cannot

be imagined. sion,

But

in reality

Beethoven undoubtedly 95

and force of pasfar surpassed

him.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

seems to lead immediately to

first trait

the second, though at

first

glance they do not

seem so closely akin. In other words, it is Meaning which now becomes more important than Beauty in itself. Beethoven first became conscious of the dignity of detail than of

less

the general plan or mood-purpose.

thoven we

first

significance

kind of

of

;

hue of a distinct perhaps, of a defined

see the gray

or, better,

feeling, instead

of the vague prattling

Haydn and Mozart.

tent to be in

an

The

irresponsible,

latter

were con-

joyous

state, or

They

accepted

they had the tears ready.

else

In Bee-

their fate, their surroundings, their institutions

unmurmuringly.

They remained

little

menials in the houses of the nobility.

above

They

were content, like good children, to be happy out of doors, in the woods and

go

to the established church

vice

;

obey the

to

meadows

and sing

authorities,

—glad

;

to

its ser-

to

be

allowed their wages, to please their patrons.

They were

To

in the

Grubb

Street stage

of music.

be sure, at times there were, in the younger,

moments of solemn wandering, even of bold revel.

But

this,

too,

was

order. 96

in

the established

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Now

comes a man, a

man of

nobler, of that other

the Rhine,

whom

counter-figure,

only-

the time across

the former celebrated in a

But in their high loyalty to his ideals, the works of Beethoven, as compared with the degeneration of Napoleon, show something of the nobility of art as compared symphony.

with statesmanship.

Beethoven was

He

a thinking man.

first

took seriously himself, his surroundings, and institutions, social

and

political.

In deed and

fact

he was true to the ideal of his thought.

He

recognized the real mission of art

slowly dawning upon us



—but

to utter the highest,

profoundest emotions only by means of beauty

of expression.

up

Feeling.

He

Thus

dethroned Beauty and for himself

and

for art

set

he

achieved the energy, the power, which rouses to action, does not lull to sleep.

His personal behavior betrayed his temper, not innocent of rudeness, when he completely reversed the accustomed relations of the nobility and the artist. Politically, he was in strongest

sympathy with the

for individual

struggles in France

freedom, for the principles on

which stand our American republic and na7

97

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING tional

This was the prompting motive

life.

of the Eroica Symphony. the champion of Justice,

Napoleon then was Equality, Democracy,

Common Sense, even of Universal Brotherhood. What Schiller dreamed in his " Freude" here was thought a heavenly reality.

Beethoven found

the

in

opposite

Thus

sphere of

action the echoing voice to his half-conscious

mutterings and

rebellion

against the tawdry

and tyrannous feudal system, under which the European continent languished. In the Fifth

Symphony

is,

perhaps, most distinctly the ut-

terance of this spirit

;

though, wherever Bee-

thoven boldly and knowingly breaks the

fetters

of form, he shows by unconscious analogy the

quality

of his

democratic,

iconoclastic

temper.

Before proceeding to the symphonies themselves,

limits

it

is

necessary to touch

of meaning in music.

on the true

We

are apt to-

day to become supercilious about " programme music."

Its

nobility

inner content rises

lies

in the fact that the

superior

to

the

outward

But the question is as to this meaning. As it was once thought translatable into human prose, the language of commonplace, useless beauty.

98

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING was found wanting, the reaction was natural to the modern theory of an Hanslick that music is a mere for

permanent things, and

as

it

:

whimsical combination of tonal figures without inner content or significance.

The meaning

is

but

and

certainly there,

true kernel

;

intellectual

meaning,

it

the

an emotional, not an

is



it is

the kind that

is

the es-

good things in the personal element which makes the world, affection. And no other form of utterance is sence of poetry, religion, and

all



so powerful for reality,

most

it

its

expression as

seems to exist

least

music.

is

where there

meaning, as in a

intellectual

In is

treatise,

perfect in logic.

in

But the danger of seeking an exact meaning music is great. Of the two errors, the nega-

tive attitude

brings

no

is

infinitely the safer

ridicule

upon

the

said before, the true essence

art.

;

at least

it

As we have

of music

un-

is its

conscious subjective betrayal of a dominating

emotion, in contrast with the conscious, objective depiction in

And

it is

in this

poetry and in the plastic

unconsciousness that

overwhelming strength. 99

arts.

lies

its

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Symphony No.

Much

E^

j?, in

has been said by

(Eroica).

critics to reconcile

Beethoven's inscription " to celebrate the

mem-

ory of a great man," to explain the apparent irrelevance of the Scherzo

cannot see the after the funeral.

camp and

fitness

Marx

sees pictures

" the joys of peace." rites

have a scenic whole, Wagner's

of a busy

Berlioz finds

of Greek war-

grave of their leader.

riors at the

They

Finale.

of humor and triumph

Scherzo the solemn

in the

and

If is

you must

the best,

Action, Tragedy, Serenity, Love.* It

seems clear that

sisted

on a

series

all

the commentators in-

of pictures

;

they must be told

a story about each movement.

be

fitter

music.

could

meaning in Taking a natural view of the comto test the true limits of

poser's attitude,

symphony narrative),

Man.

No work

he wrote,

in the

first

place, a

(not a series of illustrations, not a

of which the burden was

All pictorial

or

A

Great

narrative association

must be abandoned, even of a chronological order. It is a symphony with the dominating * in

A

good account of the various interpretations

Upton's " Standard Symphonies." 100

is

given

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING feeling of a Hero, in

death was, after

all,

various moods.

His

an event, a small

ele-

its

as

The song of mourning must come,

ment.

at all, in the

if

second movement, not merely ac-

cording to tradition, but by the highest sense

of

In

fitness.

the

whole " celebration" the

mourning note must be subordinate. somewhat the thought of Hawthorne death

is

an incident of our

many

portance than ful

day.

The

lives

of

It

far less

is

that

im-

a thought of an unevent-

of rhythm

lightness

of the

Scherzo only gives the touch of highest joy,

opening into the triumphant Finale. In the dangerous task of technical description, the question

is,

How

close

between music and meaning? to greatness

apart

is little

the relation

In proportion

seems that the conception

it

from the

is

is

In lesser masters there

details.

With

below the sound.

the great

you

must stand off as from a canvas of larger scope you must not be too near the individual figures

;

to catch the general plan.

While

the beginning

serious intent

is

is

almost graceful, the

soon disclosed where the

chestra enters united

;

or-

the dance of the violins IOI

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Second Violins, Violas. Allegro con brio.

BE

j^

4

T«-

=2-

3

:

^

t

fc4:

:-

*E

«w.

Cellos.

ceases in the abrupt, severe

tutti

chords, with a

rough syncopation which we think original in Brahms. Still, this may be a temporary contrast.

The

Then

the

melody sounds solemnly

basses

and

trebles,

denly

it

question

drops

is

which

with

full

is

to predominate.

orchestra

all severity in

in united ;

but sud-

the gliding grace

of the second melody, which

is

sung

in suc-

and responsive snatches by the woodwind and strings cessive

I02

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There

certainly nothing here but careless

is

whatever the

serenity,

of the

first

threaten.

title,

the warning sound

melody, and other omens

Throughout

there

may

seems to be a

tense balance or rivalry between

solemn

fore-

boding and exultant dance, predominating spectively in the struggle, so

two melodies

uncertain that one

re-

in a constant is

often in a

curious mixture of terror and joy, save in occasional climaxes of clear triumph or in cadences

of

idyllic tranquillity.

we remember the raison d'etre of the sonata form,* we must see that the first statement of If

melodies must in the whole

coming

symphony.

;

In

its

clear enunciation,

to a full emphatic close, followed

complete repetition,

were

give a strong clue to

itself

nay more,

as

it

must be a prologue,

it

by a as

it

contains the substance

of the most important of the four chapters.

And

so in this strange vibrating between exu-

berance and seriousness, this curious balance

between childlike abandon and succeeding vigorous, even harsh, solemnity and profundity

the typical feeling of the Heroic

* See Chapter 103

II.

symphony.

is

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING After the joyous and boisterous appearance

of the two melodies enters the ominous mysof modulation, uncertain whispering of fragments of the themes, followed by brief tery

tranquillity

the

in

second

gloomy minor mutterings of bass, increasing

mental the

fate,

with

lightness

theme

is

and

the

reiterating like

fitful,

Then

melody. first

in the

some funda-

hysterical breaking into

But

of the second.

bent to serve the stern

its

own

humor of

the

and soon the whole orchestra is striking united hammer-blows in eccentric rhythm with overwhelming power, until suddenly relieved whole

;

by a phrase of delicate pathos with violins

still

woodwind, sustaining the rhythm in the

Oboes.

* &.

3

FJ

Strings.

P

:l.

4#
1-

p

4* b

r

Basses, pizz.

Back again

m JT

f

to the fateful legend in the basses,

reiterated in minor,

suddenly relieved again, as 104



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING But the new phrase expands

before.

nets

in clario-

and fagots

^

*/

1

±

to

Pi

t*=

«5

^

pt

=t

15

SE

-•„

*^d

^SB

at=g=M: F -T T7T

t^gp5^fi-^ *&=&l: into flutes

a

new

and

P

S: song, sung responsively between

violins

———

Flutes and First Violins. -j

X,

J ^

Second Violins

«v

-<

bJ

^ffccr =3=

'-*„ ?

SH

mm

at v—

y-

*m*m

e^tti -s*

&-±

i<§

jSL.

105

—#

_J_UL4-J4 fat: bH

— 90 — 9

1

0.

1-

0-

:

d

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Now

comes the

real discussion

subject, the vigorous strife in

woodwind, with rhythmic

of the main

clear stretto

of

stress

Flutes and Oboes. Fagots.

too

mazed

light

oboe

for our sight, until

it

is

merely the

striking the phrase with resounding

echo of the

rest

Woodwind doubled above and below. Oboe.

i

In

Efc:

3d

3^3

$fcz

Trembling of strings below.

Then more hammer-blows on denly quieting before the

simply and cheerfully as at

sudden serene humor in jolliest duet

melody, entering first.

our

But here

moody

between horns and basses

Horns, Bassi. 8va

for

the chord, sud-

is

a

subject

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING humming away

with the other strings

dancing rhythm

and

flutes

all

its

first

taken

up by

its

movement, principal and

part of the

themes and phrases,

secondary, and

with

is

then through loud cadence

violins,

into a return to the

with

duet

the

;

to the

changing moods, enriched

fuller treatment.

Withal childlike

wrong

there

is

exuberance of Beethoven.

to think

motives.

the elemental simplicity and

him

It

is

o'ercast with intellectual

At once he seems charged with

foundest emotion and lightest joy.

It

pro-

is

the

balance of depth and of humanity that makes

Beethoven

great.

the Allegro

is

All doubt of the

mood

of

gone with the audacious descent

in three succeeding chords en bloc, defying the

laws of musical progression, and in this defi-

Though

ance showing the intent.* afterwards,

it

often done

never had the same Promethean

ring. is

dancing revel and

though with

greatest lightness.

Immediately thereafter a serious joy,

The whole understanding of * Yet

the musician feels

how

not disturbed. 107

the Third

Sym-

the spirit of his law

is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING phony depends upon

distinguishing profound

joy, even with wild revel, from a careless,

sponsible abandon, universal cause,

—the joy of

who,

the

Hero

irre-

in

an

in his revel, feels a clear

right to his exultation.

The

of Beethoven's feeling

intensity

conception of Napoleon's ideals ured by the reaction,

when he

may

tore

in his

be meas-

up the

title-

page on hearing of the emperor's coronation. In the second

he would go

main melody.

for the

of the

far

movement, the Funeral March, astray who would listen merely

relative

melody

unimportance

in itself.

pointed, if

we

It is

tie

in

high

art

of the

Throughout we are disapour interest to mere melodic

The

beauty here and there.

how

a fine illustration

greatness

in the exalted tone, in the

lies

some-

symbolic depth

and unity to which the melodic

are

details

quite subordinate, although they are of course the integral elements of the whole. truly a

The

So

it

is

symphonic work. initial

melody,

dently designed

all in

the strings,

less for its individual,

dent effect than for

its

fitness

plan. 108

is

evi-

indepen-

with the whole



SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Marcia Funebre. Adagio

assai.

Strings.

tes

*

IP* -J-

3±=2:

i

=»-*-



s:

x.

Si

5S J-

§±

After

it

is

comes the

w

J

Rg^^g i*

rehearsed

first

35E

StT

&

sk -h-«

r

by the whole chorus,

of those smoothly gliding,

soothing episodes, which are almost more beautiful

than the subject

t

m

itself,

4

in the phrase

n

dt

I

£

V

f 109

7

tr r

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING by another motive, sung responsively by strings climax, descending

after a

gentle

breaking into the funeral march proper, as at first

but while the drum-beats go on, the

;

gliding phrases are mainly sung, soothing the

sorrow of the

stiffly

solemn

other climax of the latter trast

is

a striking con-

of quietest even gliding of

:

After an-

subject.

strings, fol-

lowed by sharpest clang of the wind and dull beating of drums.

The

first part,

tinctly.

The

mysterious.

oboe

in

with

violas

in minor, of course closes dis-

Maggiore, in

What and

cellos

major,

at first

this serene

in

another, of evenest

rhythm, while the violins are simplest

is

moving of succeeded by the flute,

is

one phrase,

C

strumming of pastoral no

humming placidity

?

in It

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Maggiore. Oboe. .

fa — —

-J^.

Violins.

P

WWW

With octave above.

£EE*EE£

fcs

Sx=&

T= -**r

Cellos and Violas. Flute.

would be

cheerful, but for the

the polyphony.

complexity of

Before eight bars comes an

overpowering crash of whole orchestra,

lowed again by the former singing of joint voices, ing, with

no

fol-

quiet, self-contained

now

serenely continu-

funereal strain save the beating

of drums, with very gradual climax into the in

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING former crash.

But with

startling terror has It is

been avoided.

We are

away from of mourning into the empy-

surely clear.

the objective grief

the awfulness, the

all

lifted

rean of a subjective exaltation of the Hero.

mourning is not for him for him naught but serenity and triumph.

After

all,

there

is

Back

the

drums and the awe of minor. But only for a strain. Here

to the thud of

the original is

;

the profoundest of

all,

whether technically

Fagot and

general meaning.

or in

its

strike

out in noisy, dogmatic counterpoint on

violin

dimly familiar themes, of which the most important must be the sombre guise (in minor) of one of the former quietly gliding phrases Violin.

m ^=^= tr

if

Fagot and Viola.

If

-f2-

m

fcfc

In succession, fateful chant.

are

all

the voices strike into the

When

overwhelmed

as

the basses have in 112

a

it,

we

cathedral with the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING convincing mass of

awing

its

closing climax the

its

now

hurried phrase

nothing but the old theme doubled It

is

all

;

But the is

in

of

and death, and

life

lull

time.

this

all

com-

thereafter.

life

and return to the Funeral March

but for a moment. the

in

is

surely a mingling of the feeling of

Religion, of the deep enigma, in plexity

In

architecture.

After a wail of violins

main melody,

brass

and

strings strike

Again enters in the bass a reminder of the dogmatic theme carried on and on, until suddenly we hear in its very climax the original funeral melody marching in the woodwind, quite as if a secondary crashing into a strange chord.

The

after-thought, all in complete song. is

as at

first,

but enriched and extended, with

former separate themes

now

paean, with bolder acclaim

Where

the end

In

its

united in

is

common

of rhythmic

might be there

In quietest song

swing.

rest

is

strings.

a sudden

lull.

new melody with new

a

novelty,

its

strange simplicity,

it

suggests a feeling of transfiguration or apotheosis

of the Hero.

The ending

is

solemn and subdued, save a

single triumphant burst at the last.

There

is

a

curious touch in the final singing of the melody, 8

113

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING with

its

original

rhythm

all distorted.

a strange effect of reality, as

if

It

gives

the essence of

the poetry, spoken without the flesh.

In the Scherzo, Allegro Vivace,

we must not

pretend to find anything but boisterous aban-

There

don.

is

no note of the sombre, of the

save possibly a suggestion of terror in

sinister,

vehemence of the mad delight. The beginning seems all mere rhythmic

the very

preparation violins

in

the staccato strings

until

first

and oboe break into the melody

Allegro vivace. Strings, with oboe, an octave above.

Sempre pianissimo

isK-

5

S

i

e stacc,

3=Z=S-

=iSfc

T

f

W 114

m

s^ IeJJ:

:

.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The low strumming of the first bass is surely mere foil to the bright humor of the main theme. The fine haste of the incessant tripping, a sort of perpetuum mobile, is enhanced when the voices leap one over the other in

canon form

Violins. -&-

-&-



m m

J2-i

-0— -I

Violas.

±L± ?M. r

i

0-

Cellos.

overturning melodies head over heels, losing

mad

And, later, a still more splendid stretto, in whole orchestra, between the measures of trebles and of basses accent

in

their

haste.

Full Orchestra.

Basses an octave below.

"5

»

:

i

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

5

-



Si

i

^ T

I

£



5 =* 1

— =t

£ -P2-

higher and higher in the chasing game, until

they

all fall

together in headlong rhythm

i -

#" in unison and octaves.

PHH^ J

fvJf

On

their feet again

No

depth or complexity, save quite incident-

and off tripping

as before.

where the simultaneous phrases of first and second violins were reversed, the lower above the higher, a master-stroke (what the ally



scholars call double counterpoint),

all

quickly

in passing.

The

trio accents the deeper

humor

in

a

horn melody that savors unmistakably of the chase.

But

its

sustained tones only imply the pre-

n6

— ;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Trio. Horns.

±

sf

J

i

-i9r

i2=£



-&

w

-&

vious rhythm, and soon run into

its

wild gait

back again into the sonorous horn theme, finally

occasional

lapses, as

if

sighing for a

moment's thought before the Scherzo, which rushes past with the same melodies in close texture extended in a coda, where we are hovering uncertain between humor and serious triumph.

There can be no question about the of the Finale, Allegro

molto.

We

mood

need not

speculate nor philosophize deeply, yet there a rare chance for a mistake. 117

is

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There

no doubt about

is

the

And

joyous elation of the whole.

most natural

at first

unreined yet

it

is

hearing to find nothing

romp and

profounder than lightest

revel.

But

no music where there is closer relation between the notes and the sense, this higher content. Therefore, with no more ado to there

is

The opening

the reading.

bars are of course

a mere fanfare of strings in preparatory (dominant)

What

chord for the melody a

strange

theme

All

!

the tonic).

(in

in

pizzicato,

unison strings Strings doubled in two lower octaves.

£

=*-*-

•3—*-

-=!-£-

W

-N-=5—*-

pizz.

n-

8 *-

-'=1

v~l almost a



Pv

-&

•—

1/

jest in its simplicity,

and repeated

in

woodwind, and ended with comic, loud striking of common note, and lightly tripping off with the same stealthy eccentric echoing of

pace.

u8

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Next

the

melody

is

sounded by one

while

dance about with

others

the

snatches and phrases which seem to

above the melody

of

of timid

strings in sustained half-notes, instead staccato,

set

We

as below.

fit

as well

now

see the

deeper design which gradually breaks on us, lends

that



profounder

a

of completeness, of universality. design

is

a

feeling

And

yet the

dignity,

not conscious, but that curious

guided intention of the master. consciousness but gives

And

star-

the un-

the greater dignity

it

and meaning.

What relegated chrysalis

melody is now to insignificant basses, and a new of tune gently dances aloft in woodseemed

of

wind, reckless

under

its

its

dethroned

predecessor

feet

Woodwind

(with a running figure in violins).

JU^ fe= •-»-•

"1

p

main

the

p

i

dolce,

r-tJZH u _#_#_#.

_3_p_p_p._

u L

[

=3=*-"-

UI us Strings.

ite ^\ pizz.

119

m

f

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

^m w

y^ft^ cresc.

sf

m

Ill

s^

s_*_

-*

fcfc

p

decresc.

r— —*—£=£

P—

=t

f

no mere reminiscent pretence, but the whole melody with the second above, the answer, even, with the heavy chords, and the There

is

phrase

final

4JTI yd. S S SEE

P

pizz.

-

all in

nal

g

N*

V-n-S"

heaven-made union.

theme

is

'

J

n^ -^I

1 1 1

E

rr

r



-=1

pn-

But now the

origi-

restored to dignity as sonorous

subject of serious fugue, with the surrounding

phrases which give

life

to the

120

rhythm

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING C larion et.

Violins.

JT3 J^ 2 -&-

US

T

1

*?

Cellos.

down

through the four strings

mental

bassi,

to the funda-

woodwind

with attempts of

to

have their say. It is clear that

the theme has that peculiar

which we saw in the and which we shall see

quality of basic motto Finale of the Jupiter,

further

in

symphonies.

Beethoven's

In

it

the masters expressed the sense of profound

groping for fundamental truth which in

their

is

strong

compatriot and contemporary poets,

which gave that peculiar charm and strength of blended philosophy and fancy to the works of Goethe.

The

theme

plot thickens as the

ished in tempo and in close

stretto,

enters dimin-



still

further

we wonder what comes next maze, when suddenly out of the sombre

diminished, and in the

dogmatic learning dances

forth, like fairy

queen,

with quick surprise of modulation, the second

melody its

in a

minor key, where

lightness, gaining a novel 121

it

loses

none of

charm of mystery



a

:



SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings.

rehearsed with daintily comic change of in

rhythm

woodwind Flutes. *

*

/\

--j^'bZj-

sf

p

r

#

Hta

— 2 — 2 —*

^ir-r

p-t

some clownish horseplay applauded by the rest, all join in After

in the strings,

a big, ponder-

ous cosmic dance: Flutes, Oboes, Fagots, Violins.

s—

^^ji-rj—

% fc3 3

J.s

'

%J

3 5r^r ? JUL J. -#•



/» octaves, above and below,

sempre

f

yt=e

er

sempre

f

£

-(22-

:^:

^

Basses in octaves.

122

r

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING cosmic because of

we

because

its

primeval simplicity, and

hear the same fundamental motto

in the basses. It

somehow

has

versality

of

the

Schiller's

simple completeness. its

spirit

and ring of uni-

Ode to Joy, proven in its The new dance extends

melody, with the motto both above and be-

low, coming to what seems a complete close of

But suddenly off again into unexpected regions of tone on the wings of the full orchestra.

second melody, then into the mysterious phases

of the minor, the motto always present above

Once more we are in the fugue, in the dogmatic humor but now it builds more broadly and fully in a joyous climax, which suddenly drops into a religious chant of the woodwind in the scarce recognizable second melody or below.

;

:

Oboe, Clarionets Poco andante

l=J£r±=*=±M P con

espressione.



1+LA

m

t=z Fagots. 123

m*

.

-0- -*-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING in

sustained,

spirit,

solemn organ tones, softened

in

The answer

in

echoed by the

strings.

more graceful lyric feeling. Suddenly into vehement clanging of tutti, with the same melody in basses here again a lull in volume and rhythm, only to end through the second part

is

in

;

original fanfare, in

furious

galloping of the

theme, in various rhythmic guises,

most emphatic

close.

124

in

loudest,

VI BEETHOVEN

(Continued)

The Seventh Symphony. In spite of the remark in the last chapter on

new quality of Beethoven, in advance of Haydn and Mozart, of the element of a meanings it is very necessary to mark the purely the

sentient, naive, non-intellectual (I

not say

emotional)

And

is

this

character of Beethoven.

best seen in the seventh

especially as

symphony,

against the third, the

sixth,

and the ninth.

titled

symphonies

We

should rather

must be

are

On

the

fifth,

the whole, the un-

much

to be preferred.

careful to reject absolutely

any

theory of story or description, except where the master himself gives the sixth,

it is

it.

not a success,



And

there, as in

the highest proof

of the superiority of absolute music. test, after all, is

the purely musical impression,

but not in an unthinking attitude.

Beethoven's

shown have his emo-

greatness (and that of Brahms, too)

by

his refusal to

The

be categoried, to 125

is

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and whittled down to answer a

tion narrowed

In a very large degree, pro-

picture or story.

gramme music tual

is,

after

game, a subtle loss in

tional

the

is

Generally, there

the apparent gain.

the true attitude,

by absorbing

title,

Creating a

it

If the

is

can be seen

test

false

by

a

emo-

how

attention, prevents

pure enjoyment and the ception.

a mental feat, a

flattery,

guess at conundrums. real

a pretty, intellec-

all,

a

natural per-

the

interest,

label

withdraws the normal, unbiassed attention from the music

itself,

priori, arbitrary

one way,

who

preconceiving the mind to an a

connection or significance.

entitled

tricks

by

music

like the clever juggler

diverting attention from the real

to a pretended act

poor painter

is

In

who

;

in

another,

it

is

holds the witless

the strength, not of his

art,

like the

mind by

but of the printed

label.

Schumann's view of programme music was the true one, the title distinctly and literally an after-thought. If the impelling feeling must be unconscious, the poet cannot know, until he has finished, the word that explains his mood. This is the true view of the ninth symphony,



a spontaneous burst into song, not beautifully 126

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING preconceived and prearranged, as of voices that

could no longer contain the feeling

stirred

by

the earlier music.

Implication of meaning ultra-radicals

like

Berlioz,

came

who

wanted, mis-

by im-

takenly, to raise the dignity of music

puting to

it

a

power which

from

largely

could not, in

it

the nature of things, possess.

Their

artistic

was blurred by the philosophical. They confused the true limits of music and prose. Hence their incomplete work (as in all opera), seeking to eke out their music with a " meaning." Our genuine gain in joyousness from an untitled work of pure music is much greater sense

than the temporary flattery of seeing, or seeming to

see,

For to

a subtle significance.

this reason,

it

seems well

choose a work absolutely

taint

of attempted translation

free ;

once

for this

from the

deliberately to

avoid pictured or storied explanations

;

simply

to get the true musical impression, not without

keen study, illustration

Or,

if

we

only to for, at

at

once

of the

as a rare

real attitude

hear of explanations, reject,

example and an of the

let

listener.

us take

them

with presumption against

most, but one of them can be true. 127

all

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Such an

symphony

ideal

the seventh.

is

impossible to escape the din of the

is

who

shout their labels at us,



It

critics

their " Rustic

Wedding," " Moorish Knighthood," " Masked Ball," " Pastoral Scenes." * But men will forget that the more a work refuses definition, the In proportion as the interpreta-

greater

it

tion

general,

is

is.

part of our

it

human

is

apt to be true.

impulse to

It is all

limit, to

circum-

and everybody but ourselves, order to make clear and easy to understand.f

scribe everything in

We are by

in too great haste to solve all

force, to cut the

Gordian knot.

observation on these

critics

How

:

puzzles

One more each one

understands or receives exactly according to

many

his capacity, just like so

ing

size,

is

nowhere so

vessels of vary-

clearly

shown

as in

symphonic commentaries. And this is a great truth, and the best view of criticism. Thus each has a * If Earthly

I

right,

without pretence of judicial

had to join in the chorus,

Symphony,"

I

should

call

it

" The

— Goethe's

" Wirklich ist es wunderschon Auf der lieben Erde."

f Also,

I fear,

from

a less

worthy motive of deprecia-

tion.

128

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING authority, to it

and each one

;

the other

tell

is

how

he

feels

about

giving something of himself.

One common quality has been read in the seventh symphony by so many commentators, must naturally emphasize an opposite element which seems to him to have that the latest critic

been overlooked.

rhythmic the

(or

spell that shines

symphony.

many

All agree in the bewitching

through every bar of

But where we must

interpreters

is

in the degree

of seriousness) which they

as if

many view merely

differ

with

of lightness

find.

It

seems

the fact of the dance-

rhythm, and of the simple melodies, without feeling the bigness, the

the orchestral

fundamental depth of But, avoiding

treatment.

danger from preconceived theory,

The beginning of Haydn,

is

serious, the

— of Brahms,

too.

let

the

us listen

:

slow Sostenuto

But Beethoven

could not, with the light intent of an Offenbach, sound a solemn prelude, only to dance

away

into frivolity for the rest of the evening.

Therefore this beginning a

symphony must begin

its

scope. 9

I2 9

significant.

Then,

simply, alone to

show

is

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Out of heavy

bursts of chords floats a quiet,

legend-like theme, in

what

primal intervals (some-

as in the Eroica), in

succeeding

strains

of

woodwind

the

Oboe.


JAU3

4-i

T*

-

st-

Clarionets

fp

r

fP

mf

-0-

_1r

m

In both ical

is

that

German, profound philosoph-

impulse to find the mystic formula, the

pervading cosmic principle, as in the second part of Faust

the feeling, too, of Mozart's

;

favorite motto,* in the Jupiter

elsewhere.

mann,"

The

is

musician, the " Fach-

literal

will say that these

for their capacity for

exactly the

wrong

symphony and

themes are chosen

development. idea.

He

But

fails

to see

below the black notes on the surface. treats music as a branch of mathematics, * See Chapter IV. 130

this

He for-

*

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Uncon-

getting entirely our definition of the scious Arithmetician.

After a few bars of solemn chanting of the legend, there strings,

a gentle

is

which gradually

the quiet theme

stir

of motion in the

With

infects the rest.

pervading, the whole slowly

still



movement, this is the clearest impression still, the motto constantly completing and rounding out. As it grows to overpowering digathers ;

mensions, there suddenly breaks through a melody, not of dance, but of the most tensely pent desire for

rhythm,

harmony of woodwind

in

:

Oboes, Clarionets.

1 £ —*—? --

-

r p dolce.

m

e£e

a-

I

— u t=tttt^f -* -*

r Woodwind.

52.

t

.#_#. -*-*-

TI

T I



H


3-4*

V—U

a call for the dance, oft repeated, high in the

woodwind and low in the strings by the earlier phase). Then there joining of hands, getting ready. all

are

still

moving

is

a gradual

Some

imperfectly. 131

(interrupted

begin

Soon the

:



SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING whole movement grows strong and united a Vivace dance, led by the woodwind

into

Flutes, Oboes, Clarionets.

^

Vivace.

Me

atot 1- ^zji-^i

:tot3t=£z3tzr

S^z

^

7JT7

Sempre piano.

gj

Fagots, Horns.

#. •..»_

Ig.g ! g:gg

«(?-=:

g-^s-

i^-T^ -j^-i..

SEr

-#- • -9

€- ' -§-#-

P$*=*=^4 1

J*"

£

-

r ixn ^j

H2-

C£f-

j.

&J:

^

£3

^_5

#.

^iiB

-JSL

132

t-3-3-

t— ft

32

^

*

as

I

J33

.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

strings at

first

merely strum lightly

But soon they take a higher

time.

in

part, in

echoing response Woodwind

9

in octaves.

m

J242.

K

-•V

J

I

ST 1

X P

r-f-

^=p

Strings in double octaves below.

As

the bass strings thus dance the time in

counter-movement, the whole for frivolity

;

it

becomes deep.

seen throughout.

rhythmic

step,

is

it

too ponderous

This must be

mere

If the basses gave a

would be otherwise.

Their

active vocal part gives a cosmic color to the

The dancing melody

whole. that

it

is

so continuous

seems impossible as well as needless to

and second themes. It Like a great round dance, they

is all

and, gathering with a run, begin again the

more

distinguish

so clear.

furiously,

first

now holding with a long step to

stop,

return

to the rhythm, suddenly in quietest, daintiest

skipping

still softer,

then in bold, loud chorus, 133

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING always

not of a small group,

changing phases thing, then

We is

it is



sometimes the song

;

only a

it,

We

every-

as ever, this dance

must not

nor to see

figure, a

it

try to find

everywhere.

It is

image of a much The joint dance of all

passing

greater idea or feeling.

common

is

a mere dance again.

merely symbolic.

the

a dancing song with

must remember, here

a picture of

is

of a mass in unison,

this united feeling

mankind in joy, as those days by poets in verse

uniting of

was proclaimed in and tone, and might well be proclaimed now anew. In another view, it shows how Beethoven combined purest exuberance with profoundest sympathy.

And,

after the repeated statement, the period

of discussion ment") strongly.

shows

For

(to

avoid the hated "develop-

the

symbolic

here, in the

almost halting rhythm, vidual wandering

puntal process.

Up

off,

is

quality

much weakened, the

clearest

separate in

viduals, the

indi-

the contra-

The hue of metaphysics

and down, one against the

gray, colorless

most

is

on.

other, in the

straying of independent indi-

common bond

is

relaxed and for-

gotten, only to join once again, with gradual 134

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING uniting, in the universal rhythm.

symbolic, the wandering

is

and

dency to

separate thought

is

though not without

action, independent,

interdependence.

But ever

again, after the ten-

stray apart in disunion

comes the magnificent joining movement and song. Allegretto

can

make

is

If the dance

and discord,

in the

common

the nearest approach Beethoven

to the

mood of

pathos in this

poem

of Earth and Humanity.

In this balance of

rhythm with solemnity

to us, one of the

highest of

all inspirations.

Beethoven, wherein Schubert. stirred in

is,

we

It is in

a vein rare to

much

kinship with

see

The spirit of this Allegretto must have the younger master when he thought

famous melody of the song, " Death and the Maiden." cannot escape, again, the his

We

mystic

German groping

in a single

motto

;

fundamental truth

for

as, first,

monic and rhythmic plan

is

the essential har-

simply stated in

lower strings, with sombre, broken sounds Viola, Celli, Bassi.

135

1



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING —

1

S«*q

"T

r-u

'^±&ii=h±&*±

=sa=t»

fjf'f

EfH'f •







JJ-7 Ml

and then the melodic song surges above

clear, sustained tones,

dirge continues

its

while the former fateful

solemn, unaltered march.

The second melody, solemn vein,

human

in a strain

and

Strangely,

it

in

in major,

abandons the

of purest

lyric feeling,

not

mortal,

reminds

us

of

eternal

of quite

truth.

another

vein of Schubert, frequent in his impromptus.

no complete escape from the old rhythmic beat which keeps dinning on in the bass against the swinging melody of

But

there

is

violins 136

*

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING *£

-— 3-#-

«=SF ft

-J-t

^§ -•

-&



=»z:



•-

f

pizz.

fp*:

—^—

Strings.

j=

@!t=± -^

H—

a

--

s

and now we are alone with the mournful hymn, but this is sung with greater freedom and lightness. Suddenly the strings alone strike into a monkish fugue on the original theme in thin, ominous tones,

The

lyric love-song

with unceasing

is

over,

of the

course

rhythmless countertheme, sion

to fate.

all in

monotonous, pious submis-

But now fugal and counterrung with overwhelming power

theme both are by the whole orchestra. of

human longing

end

in the

same

is

Once more the strain heard. Then comes the

dull,

broken, fateful sounds,

137

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING with a strange wail in the violins with the closing chord, as of a dying soul. Scherzo.

Now

for

Presto.

the dance in earnest.

It

the

is

natural climax for such a

symphony, this third phase the very acme and essence of rhythm. All the pent-up motion is let loose, yet not in ;

wild disorder, but

in

all

unconscious though

As

perfect obedience to a subtle swing.

where, the highest is

sum

else-

or quantity of motion

only possible with regularity and harmony

simultaneously and successively, as of horses

They must

drawing a chariot.

all

common motion. And

one united agreement of a real

achievement of

race

in

speed, for

never was

Offenbach or Strauss half so light as

this pro-

foundly serious master of ours. Presto. Tutti.

Woodwind in

-fig

octave below.

M

s

WOOD WIND AND

/ &=£= M~

H

Str ^4-=J-F

Basses strumming below.

138

4

i

INGS.

s=i

r

F

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

H#5 S^ j -m

t t=zt



S

»-

t

t trt

r r

^^^#^

-z'

i

i

E £=£ And

F

t

——

"25*-

Tg"

EEE

r

were long-sustained notes ever so

in-

viting to the dance, so subtly alive with motion Strings.

:

i

*-m

-&

m

wr &

cresc.

sf

or in the oft-repeated clarionets, like

humming

^

s^ii

£fc*

F

1

1

'.

and

hovering insects

1 JiJ -

in flute

7

L

'

-r— i

P 139

|

"

^-d JJ

i

|



I



1

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING But much greater is this subtle implication of motion in the Trio, where with violins sus-

A

taining a long fagots,

and

speed, a

droning horns,

in octaves, the

clarionets are singing, in diminished

new theme

Assai meno presto.

-*-£-

p

tfJ^

art.

>~^I £-*-

dolce

I~

-1

£L

It is

iU J

-<#-

#-»

w

a s

-?=*

-<&-*-

f

a typical union of highest feeling and

With

on a high tone,

violins sustained

giving merely a rare quiver,

it

is

stant

buzzing of

it

for ruder ears really a rest

is

-*-*-

'-y-r

motion,

much

like the con-

forest bees, but so subtle that

as the

with highest

humming-bird, with wings

vibrating in invisible motion, seems to rest on

hidden

threads,

or

like

the

pulse of sound

becomes one sustained tone. But this is only around and about. Through the midst comes the quiet, intimate song of the woodwind emerging itself,

which

is

so rapid that

it

;

140

:

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING from nature sounds,

There

ment.

is

speaks

it

no mistaking

notes of the song.

definite

ulate in

its

human

senti-

this in the quiet, It

is

too artic-

contrast with the vaguely quivering,

And

buzzing wood-notes.

the song

later

more human, almost pleading, save quiet, constant rhythm ever

is

for its

Woodwind.

Doubled above and below.

P -& 75"

dolce.

i

±2 C3I»

The horns begin more and more

-*— * T5T -&-

a gradual

of rhythm

stir

enter, until all the world,

man

and nature, with overwhelming power, have joined in our sweetly solemn song. It

is

rest in

by

really, all

Trio, a sort of idyllic

the woods, from which

a sudden

frolic

this

we

are whirled

shock back to the impersonal

of the original scherzo, with

all its

romp-

ing joy, in full career to the end, not without several

returns to

the

musing revery of the

141

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING And

song of the Trio. a break

the

in

withal there

relentless,

intensely rhythmic in all

The

Finale

With

don.

is

its

motion,

disguise.

the infectious, resistless dance

which betrays

its

—above

song.

all,

universality.

than national, though there

shown

never

a big, almost a serious aban-

certain ponderousness,

national

resistless

is

The

is

a

is

a simplicity

It

greater

is

the suggestion of

primitive

simplicity

is

the absence of defined melody, of

in

varied tonality, of contrast of rhythm.

hard to find any

themes

It

is

whole melodious tissue, and the complementary chords, of tonic and dominant, are rung with official

almost barbarous plainness. dance,

it is

in the simplest

in the

Magnetic

as

is

the

conceivable rhythm

:

titrr -i^f^fH i

There

are

no

contrasts, save in the

light tripping after the

whole If

sudden

ponderous clog of the

orchestra.

any theme can be 142

called the subject,

it

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING is

in the

after

pervading figure

(first

in the violins),

rhythmic chords Allegro con brio.

(

With harmony

in the strings.)

Flutes and Oboes.

x

sf

£^/F

sfV

Clarionets, Fagots.

where

all

the

woodwind comes dancing

in

on

ponderous, eccentric skip at the end of the bar.

It

is

in the very lack

of pretence, of

conscious beauty of outline, or of significance in

the melodies, that consists the feeling of

And

romp.

we must always come back of joy which we saw in the first

yet

to that quality

movement, which seems as

it

is

fundity.

special to our master,

to the highest poetic feeling

Nothing could be more

irresponsible in

ing Finale;

its

abandon, than

:

of proreckless,

this rollick-

but no one can think of 143

it

as

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING frivolous,

and

its

stamp of universality

first

repeating of melody,

can escape

eternity.

On

it

goes, after

followed by mere running up and the wind, with strings beating the

change about.

Then

down of all time. They

a bandying of the origi-

nal phrase in the strings Strings.

==

H=i==2 f

3

r

ni

J^T

/



H

with a mere suspicion of logic, of discussion, followed

immediately by the simplest, most

childlike dancing tive

rhythm

up and down

in the primi-

(cited above), as if to 144

reject

the

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING very suggestion of conscious thought, gether,

hand

in hand, in

all

to-

unison step, until the

which we alluded above. As all stop on a sudden chord, the violins trip lightly along, to the strumming of strings first

contrast, to

alone, with sudden shock of interrupting chorus, like

clownish attempts at frightening

The

finest

together,

romping on,

with

eccentric

lightest tripping chase 10

all

stamping heavily

thud,

of strings 145

by up and down, followed

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the very ideal of frolic.

of

this,

we

After repetition of all

how

are curious

far the

master will

ascend (or descend) to the region of reflective

thought in what German technique Durchfuhrung.

But

all

we can

calls the

discover

is,

after

careering and coursing of the leading figure, a little

wondering pause

mimicked by lower

in

violins,

echoed or

strings

Strings.

^

y-*z sf *f.

-&•

m

^g=^=^

=t£ 6

plunging back into the rollicking swing. Later,

woodwind echoes the dance, there queer effect of mockery of this reflecting

as the high is

a

figure in the violins, in

swers, after

which there

quick successive anis

a

return

original festivity, with deepening

to

the

and extend-

(above quoted).

ing of the

little

The ending

corresponds in increased boister-

discussion

ousness, with a full sounding of the pervading 146

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING phrase, together with an answer developed in

the discussion above described,

which seems

to

vent the bursting feeling in an almost articulate phrase of exultation Woodwind. Strings doubled above.

m

»

* i.

_y.

£s

The Fifth Symphony.

We

have so

far

conceived a symphony as

an expression of a dominant

feeling,

from a

subjective stand-point, or, objectively, as a view

of

life,

in

which the

four typical phases or moods, of first

is

of aspiring resolution, the

second of pathos, the third of humor, the the fourth

of triumph.

With such

a plan,

which was gradually and unconsciously developed from Haydn to Beethoven, we could not expect a great number of symphonies from one master.

A man's pervading, fundamental feeling 147

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING or view could not change so as to permit

him

two such symphonies in quick succession.* But this purpose may be called the highThere are really two kinds of symphonies, est. the titled, and the untitled, where the range of feeling is narrowed, more or less, in some way. And we might even distinguish a third class, where there is a mere suggestion, by inscription or by a cursory remark of the composer, of the prevailing mood, contrasted with those works in which there is an expressly limited field from the beginning. Of course, we must never forget the unconsciousness of

to write

masters of these general or special purposes.

A very striking example of the specially titled symphony is Beethoven's Sixth, the Pastoral, "on the memories of life in the country." We have described the Heroic Symphony, written " to celebrate the

memory of a

great

man."

In

more modern works such titles as Spring, Forest, Winter, Rhine are prominent. It is

doubtful whether the importing of titles

* Mozart's rapid composition of phonies

must be viewed rather

earlier sketches.

148

as

his three great

sym-

the completion of

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING into the is

called

to

its

symphony, the introduction of what programme music, in itself has added Perhaps the best type

dignity or power.

Beethoven's Pastoral, which First

on

annotated thus

Movement, Pleasant Feelings awakened

arriving in the

the

is

is

Brook

;

Country

;

Second, Scene at

Third, Jovial Meeting of Country

by Fourth, Thunder and turn interrupted by the final move-

People, interrupted

Storm, in

ment, entitled Sentiments of Benevolence and Gratitude to it is

God

after the

Storm.

Of

course,

impossible not to accept the composer's in-

must be remembered that sketches an appended note was fcund,

But

terpretation. in his

it

directing the hearer to find the situations for

himself;

and, further, that in the final

gramme Beethoven added

to

the

title

pro-

the

words, " Rather an Expression of Feeling than a Picture."

pense with I

If

we should be

any of Beethoven's symphonies,

venture to say that

would be

obliged to dis-

lost.

It is

in

the Pastoral

least

not overbold to say that

Beethoven himself was not consciously aware of the true dignity and power of the symphony.

Truth

in

art

is

determined, not by

reasoned a priori deduction, but by an irregular 149

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING much

course of experiment, where

error

must

a single

work

be expected. In choosing from the rich as a type for illustration,

field

from the

C

untitled class, the Fifth, in

limits

of the

Minor, seems the

most broadly representative. The work was produced in 1808, having been for years in

No

course of composition.

title

appears in

the programme, except

Symphony No.

C

5, in

1.

Allegro con Brio.

2.

Andante con

3.

Allegro {Scherzo).

is,

perhaps, one prejudice to the un-

interpretation.

assisted

Mo to.

Presto.

4. Allegro.

There

Minor, op. 67.

It

is

Beethoven's

re-

ported casual suggestion of a meaning of the principal

may

motive

but for

;

by

breadth.

At

not to

feel

a

the

is

that

char-

sublime dignity, vigor, and hearing

first

that there

behind the notes.

present

The symphony

be disregarded.

acterized

the

is

The

it

is

impossible

a very real purpose

entire absence

of

friv-

olous dallying with themes, the striking contrast

of succeeding melodies (especially towards

the end of the third and fourth movements, 150

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING which, against

all

tradition, follow

without a stop), above

all,

each other

the iteration from

beginning to end of a certain short passage, but four notes

with the whole orchestra at times hidden in the basses and drums, severity, again

in

now

in

its

grim, terrible

a dancing measure, then in

timid, mysterious discord, until

it

ends in the

—can

it

be said that

of triumph,

clearest note

means nothing, translated word for note commonplace ? all

or unless

until

this

it

be

into the language of

works of the human mind, there must be a certain degree of intelli-

As

in all truly great

gent perception. is

Further, a certain maturity

absolutely necessary to understand Beetho-

ven.

He

is

not for the young

;

above

all,

not

For these he is often no more than ugly and ominous noise, which makes

for the shallow.

them uneasy. listeners

They should shun him.

must be capable of

ness, the terror, the fight 151

of

His

feeling the grimlife.

Then they

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING can exult with him in the triumphant joy of the undaunted.

The recurring problem of musical study is the mode of this perception. There has always been a dilemma between a mere sympaemotional attitude and that of technical

thetic,

Neither

analysis.

must be

analogy to the truth

in

of creation, which of high

adequate.

is

art,

is

a blending of feeling and

where the

latter is subordinate,

indispensable as unconscious sion.

So the he

unless

listener

know

Yet

master.

the message

in

yet

means of expres-

cannot expect to perceive high language of the

this

mere analysis he

for

;

The answer of the mode

will

not find

does not communicate

art

The

propositions

by

must be

sympathetic, expectant attitude,

in

proof.

logical

listener

not closed like a fortress to the besieger, not disdaining the utmost knowledge of the art-

medium, with mind fully intent on the emotional meaning, by a similar blending, as of the original composer.

We

might

step in Beethoven's third

movement

greatest

briefly to

revert

change

advance.

that in

some It

Beethoven

outline. 152

was

special in the

made

the

Originally, with

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Haydn and Mozart,

it

Beethoven made

a

was an idealized dance

humorous phase, fitting But the humor was with the whole plan. typically sardonic. He changed its name, too, from minuet to scherzo. But more significant is

it

the change in the treatment of the theme.

The

era

more

A

of childlike simplicity had passed.

and more

intellectual

virile

age had

ar-

which the leading melody in itself is not so important as its use literally and strictly as a theme an age of musical thinking as against dreaming; of cerebration as against mere inspiration of a logical sequence of rived, in

;

;

thought rather than a blunt alternative

;

of a

tendency which has resulted in a school where the theme

work than

is is

no more an the

of a

title

integral part

of a

story.

no more convincing evidence of the peculiar power of music, which we have been There

is

trying to define, than in the comparison of such

works

as the seventh

and the

fifth

symphonies

of this graphic portrayal, not of pictures, not of stories,

not of doctrines, but of feelings.

while saying the

weakness

;

word we

for feeling

are aware

may mean

the most frivolous, the

most

153

of

its

And utter

the emptiest,

useless thing, as,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING indeed,

may

it

be the weightiest, the most pre-

most powerful.

cious, the

thoroughly, feeling such as

works

the spring of

is

cording.

It is

all else in life

the original fount of

action, of statesmanship,

humanity

;

sion of that

For when traced prompts great art-

of

ethics,

worth all

re-

heroic

of poetry, of

indeed, these are but the cold expres-

which

would not be

is

the living, sentient

difficult for

fire.

It

a historian to find in

the revolution of France, in the Constitution of

America, the crystallized

result

of the passion

which began to rouse men in unconscious beginnings from the first years of Humanism in Italy. And, useful as these organized institutions must be, the most precious forms of expression will be those which show most of the unconscious fire and vehemence of the original

In proportion as

impelling feeling.

they take on practical shapes, they will lose their

dium

natural vigor. like

ment still

it

is

that

a

me-

music, which, without pretence of

articulate definition

human

Thus

of the prose language of

makeshift, of so-called practical adjust-

to the externals of changing conditions,

rears the highest structure

of Art, on figures

of enthralling beauty, will be the most perfect 154

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING human

utterance of our

powerful,

There

is

noblest

no

feelings,

in

stirrings

those

all-

man's nature.

corollary here of depreciation of

logic,

of significant language.

divers

modes of

There must be

utterance, varying in nobility,

suited to differing natures ditions of creation

and

differing

and of reception.

con-

In the

various utterance of emotion, of whatever shade

of Art or of differentiated meaning, constituting

human

intercourse, lies the

for ever

new and

seed or stimulus

nobler feelings, which in turn

need newer utterance, and lead in their expression to

improvement and ennoblement of

outward conditions of

Not only

human

life.

in their separate song,

but in their

contrast, are seen the varying qualities

two

great symphonies,

of those

and thereby of the

ver-

power of the language of music that Mendelssohn meant when he said that music was much more definite than prose, the very quality satile

which laymen



those

are fully persuaded

The Seventh

is

is

who

live in externals

absolutely non-existent.

a mighty paean of joy, in

utterance of subjective feeling.

The

Fifth

is

burdened with the stern awfulness of the external

power, with which the strongest can but i55

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING struggle. hide, as in

Most of

from the lightning, and gratefully bask

intermittent

metheus can

sunshine.

The

solitary

Pro-

at highest express the sense

But

struggle, or

own

us run, as from the rain, or

let

the

symphony be

of its

evangel.

At

the very beginning, the ominous motto

strong, but in stern, hollow octaves Allegro con brio. Strings doubled in two octaves below.

then lightly dancing in the strings, with the

rhythm which

it

first

lacked,

it

rises,

a

melody

Strings and Fagots.

in

its

responsive

singing,

ending

in

massive

chords and in a pause that adds to the solemnity of legendary utterance. 156

The

first

pages

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING are full

lack of

of

sombre melody, yet without

stern,

resistless

motion.

stant, vital impulse,

Strange this con-

without joyousness.

striking here, the contrast in sentient

And

meaning

of the Fifth and the Seventh Symphonies, the merciless drive of objective, external destiny as against internal, subjective joy.

more decided, rational sounding of the motto by the horns, follows the quiet, pious second melody in the violins, in soothing After a

major, unmistakable in

its

sense of beseeching,

of refuge from the



cherishing peace and

solace.

But

it

first,

cannot

resist

anxiety stealing in

Strings.

p dolce Z fcfr

p

to

&

3

ff Horns

i

$ -r

&

r

i—

&,. _|S2

-i'

^

*^~ t **&-

r

-4-4-d-

and increasing, as the four notes are approaching in the background of the basses, on to a climax,

where the

statement

ends

with a determined ringing of the motto.

No

repeated

greater contrast can be imagined than of the '57

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING two melodies. ent persons spirit,

trust.

the phase of discussion, with au-

is

warning, and then on with the rhyth-

mical melody and the same theme, Strings, Clarionet,

PF in doubled octaves.

and

differ-

of stern necessity and pleading

with a quality of pious

Here sterest

;

the dialogue of

It is like

light,

soon

hammering.

fitful

and

The more

first

gentle

and Horns.

N

^

^«*—

feverish, into furious

rational phase appears,

which promises to bring in the plaint of second melody but it is lost in the wild rush of the fateful sounds, and so, most rare and most significant, there is no sign of the second melody in the whole period of discussion. Instead, ;

there

is

a

responsive

succession

chords, tapering off with

WOODWIND AND

of solemn

monotonous BRASS. Strings.

repeti-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING tion, like the stillness

of Egyptian temple, into

timid expectancy before the renewed shocks of

hammers, ringing their incessant, thud, without peace and solace, in the

the terrible fateful

by

original motto, followed

the original suc-

cession of melodies, where the second sounds

more

and

helpless

than ever.

pitiful

coda the main theme

In the

predominates, with

still

a brief fugue, suggestive of priest and church,

but above

Doom.

with the gloom of ruthless

all filled

There

is

no mercy

Andante con moto.

It

might well have been There

called Andante Religioso.

change with the

note

;

is

an

entire

in the first impres-

from turbulence and anxiety

sion, rest

soon

first

as yet.

we cannot be

really rest or

distinction

still

quite

;

sure whether

a seeking for rest

but it

is

like the

;

of Lessing's " Truth and Search for

Truth," of which he preferred the

latter.

There

seems to be a distinct feeling of prayer about Perhaps the best word would

the Andante.

be Faith,

—a

trustful reliance,

which

varies in

strength as the attacks from without vary in intensity,

which

are clear in the

dim reminders

of the haunting motive.

But the predominant 159

feeling

is

contained in

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the leading melody, violas

and

first

in the celli.

announced

It is that

in

the

kind of mel-

Andante con moto. Violas and Cellos.

fl

dolce.

Basses, pizz

§M£MU=

Pfgegpjpipip i x

ody where Beethoven

strikes his deepest

the tone of profoundest sympathy, which

men

to

It

is

known

note

bound

him most. not without interest that Beethoven

on

to have toiled

this

theme,

much

is

as a

sculptor chisels his vision out of the marble.

no necessary connection between the beauty of a melody and the ease with which it was first uttered, which is often It

shows that there

called spontaneity.

is

On

the contrary, there

is

reason to think that the musical thoughts of highest value were not without a certain cor-

responding labor in their 1

60

final perfection.

The

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING manner of writing is thus often of high interest in gauging, by comparison, the special quality Thus, for example,

of each master.

this

is

a

melody which Schubert could not write. And we remember how Schubert wrote with absolute

freedom from

as if delivering himself

toil,

High and

of a pressing burden.

rare as

was

Schubert's fancy, he had not that vein of deep

human sympathy which marks Beethoven not only as of the greatest among human poets, but of the greatest among the men of all personal

There

time.

is

a tendency to value too highly

the quality of ease of utterance.

It

would be

on the other side. This melody is the main tissue of the whole movement. It is varied only by a secondary one, which is contrasted neither in key nor in

better to err

theme,

serving,

in

its

simplicity,

for

quick

Clarionets.

dolce.

Fagots.

•N

Wm With

W

1m

±t

obligato of Violas.

161

H

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING modulation into triumphant bursts, or preceded

by timid drooping

often

of the

motto

terrible

before a suggestion

:

Violins with sustaining Clarionets.

PP '

First

new

and Violas.

Violins it

tonal

rushes into a bold cadence

atmosphere

ing, wanders,

but,

;

in

a

quickly relaps-

pursued by the motto, an

still

anxious suppliant, into the refuge of the

first

The predominance of the chief melody is veiled by new figures of rhythm and of setting, and by intervening touches of eloquent pleading or of austere solemnity. At melody.

the last verse there the

prayer,



a

is

a decided joyfulness in

vision

of coming

where woodwind and higher loudest

acclaim on the

victory,

strings unite

melody, the

in

horns

sound the harmony, the drums the rhythm,

and the lower strings strum ment.

The end

is

in a spirit

Probably nothing offers

in rapid

in

such a subtle and 162

all

accompani-

of reassurance. musical literature

irresistible

temptation

;;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING to find a hidden content, as this third

move-

ment, where the name Scherzo seems to have

been omitted only because although the humor

sombre profundity, as

is

is

is

it

was not needed

of a kind

that, in

its

as peculiarly Beethoven's

the pathetic or sympathetic quality of the

The

Andante.

temptation comes,

I

suppose,

from the curious atmosphere which one

feels

immediately on entrance, like that of a magician,

when

the lights are lowered and terrible

things are going to happen.* liant all,

There

is

a

bril-

though dark-hued dramatic color about

some

as in

ideal Freischuetz,

without

it

inter-

fering words.

At

the risk of seeming rhapsodical to some,

pedantic to others,

I

must recur

to

some

well-

worn philosophical terms, for lack of better ones. I can find nothing more expressive than subjective and objective for a certain quality or relation of themes. I cannot escape them for, more than suggestive or symbolic, they *

It

may be

interesting for the reader to

compare the

impression Berlioz gives of this Scherzo somewhere in his writings.

reading

it

The

anew,

sion of his

author has purposely refrained from

in order to present an unbiassed impres-

own. 163

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING represent accurately the truth of the composer's

Thus, nothing can be

intent.

relative significance

the

first

clearer than this

of question and answer

theme, where the former

rises

in

from

the sombre depths of the basses, like a sinister Allegro.

Violins with added Woodwind.

message, while the answer, in higher harmony, is

as unmistakably, as against the outer danger,

the inner deprecation.

Whatever any one may

read of story or meaning, according sensible or inflammable state, 164

to his

no one who can

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING music

feel

at all,

can deny

this sharp relation

of a foreign omen and a personal

good

to have

Now,

shall

shall

we

take

a tripping



This

is

we

truth.

it ?

is,

t«o

this entering figure ?

feel

in three-quarter time,

once

for all,

three-quarter

and no

out of the question.

For those who

nothing more, we can express

The horns

pity.

How

For, as for simply accepting

not that kind of music.

can or will

mere

say

theme

that

It is

the repeated phrase and pause,

after

what

more,

some bed-rock

plaint.

sound,

in

curious

dance time, a kind of iambic

Horns.

=^==i=q=

H=3=* a^_^ X X

ff

£

q=q=F

3=2 X

tt^

*-*

S^ X

felM N

;g~

X

X X

:

f

^S 165

-£-

3« :

X X

S

w-

f-*-*-

"SlT

tKx X

^3 I

-*-*-

——



J

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING waltz, while

thrumming

are

strings

mony, a theme of which

the har-

but the end

all

nothing but groups of successive

G'j,

is

with pe-

utmost vehemence, im-

riodical halts, all with

mediately answered and extended by the whole

None

orchestra, with martial vigor.

to see the hidden relation with the

motto of the symphony TfTv

1

f\

rl

only

;

^™^™ U

it

for

it

original

has the guise

1

1

;

fail

1

««l

of a newer rhythm

can



A-±

dances along with

infectious, resistless swing, instead

of the dull

thud, with awing pause.

But how times there fanity,

shall is

we

take

it,

even so

Some-

?

almost a touch of sardonic pro-

almost of blasphemy, of unholy jesting

with unspeakable things.

Critics

have been

sure of the ring of defiance here.

But we must remember Some of them we are always one,

it is

is less

For

forgetting.

conscious of his intent than

the intelligent hearer.

far.

things.

the paradox of musical literature that

the composer is

several

The

poet's

mind

is

166

And

the reason

is

not

too intensely absorbed

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING with

creation

his

thought

have an

undercurrent

mood.

the quality of his

for

will take care art,

to

of

That

will express itself in the

itself,

But for otherwise he must by all means

the better for being unwatched.

the listener

it is

;

get as near as he can to the

And

then

mood

of the master.

we must not expect

to see this

meaning (as it might be called) conand interlinear, word for note. There

sentient stant

must be often great uncertainty.

And

may be the most Thus there may be an

within large limits, there solute certainty.

definable

border-land between

and objective

the

yet,

abin-

subjective

attitudes, while at times the

two

are clearly distinguished. It

is

sometimes

writer or a speaker is

not strange

if

difficult to is

whether a

in earnest or in jest.

we cannot be

tain of the intent

tell

absolutely cer-

of a composer, especially

he himself could not

tell

It

us.

if

If Beethoven

had written " Scherzo" there might be enough ground for the ring of defiant humor which

many *

critics

hear.*

Literal questions

But,

altogether,

and questioners for

must be shunned with the same horror people

who

as

each

to

us

phrase

the terrible

ply you for categorical answers of yes or no. 167

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the hue of seriousness prevails,

what with the gloom of the minor, the vehemence of the chords, notwithstanding the constant tripping

movement. atives,

The

Still

the old burden of external omen.

is

it

light

suggesting the former correl-

rhythm, which

some means grim

for

seems rather merely a new phase for the former threatening evil. But in the middle defiance,

episode,

commonly

called the Trio, there can

be no such doubt.

As

the lowest strings start alone in a rum-

bling dance

movement, here

Cellos and Basses

9 —0

4

purest, roughest

play,

(in octaves).

IS

m / Ssm fcs

the spirit of

is

much

humor,

boisterous,

One

too ponderous.

—not

thinks of the

elephant dance in the jungle book.

second part the humor

In the

clearer

still

is

horse-

in the

successive broken attempts of the basses before Basses alone. (m\ % V*J>

\~s

P y

N* •V

\* »\

m

i* 1



1

!_L-U_|_i

/

dim. 1

68

9

a i* !_!— l_i_^_

' i

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING they once

away

more

find

and rumble

feet

But the humor has the

the dance.

in

their

profound, eternal quality, fitting with art,

first

ending

second time

it

a great

in

of the beat

first

melody

sinister, ;

The

bacchanale.

dwindles away, until

suddenly back in the

highest

we

are

cavernous gloom

again, in the puzzling

of tripping motto, whether

superhuman, descending into

human

or

lower depths

still

of sombrest gloom, with demoniacal perversion of the melody,

when suddenly

a turn of

the major lets in a clear ray of hope,

comes the heroic

lift

to that of angels, sinister,

to

from the abode of

from

overwhelming

emancipation

Allegro, awaiting

and then devils

hell to heaven,

evil to

of the

from

moral triumph, the

as

spirit,

no pause, throwing

final

off the

shackles of the tripping pace, bursts in exultAllegro.

Full Orchestra.

_ P

,

*l

f



._

*H TTPT

-&c —-

-&-

t^trf — p —

1

-£2-

-P2.

; : :

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING ant marching chords in brightest major. is

all clear

music

about

vation, has

a cold

the music here

spirit

clearer

and

Your

prose.

poly-

from the Latin, with devious

syllable

living

—nay,

example, again, of Mendelssohn's

a striking

mot

as the spelled word,

It

is

deri-

of meaning

convention the meaning

itself,

and beautiful embodiment of

is

this

the

very

of achieved freedom from outward con-

ditions.*

Curiously, yet naturally, the feeling does not

break at

into a

first

pronounced melody,

as if

the joy were too great to find, for a while, a

So

clear utterance. cipal melodies,

there are really

of which, when the

two

first

prin-

has ex-

boisterous exuberance, the second

hausted

its

sings a

clearer

and quieter chant, while the

noisy basses are ever interrupting with turbu-

up and down. So plain is the you can almost hear the voices, as

lent coursing

chant, that

of some great, comprehensive choral

* Again,

it

is

suggested

that

read of the whole symphony.

George Grove nies.

in a

Berlioz's

There

is

hymn

comment be

also

one by Sir

book on Beethoven's Nine Sympho-

There must be other

descriptions.

170

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Oboe, Clarionet, and Horns.

m

^^ -sr

4^± tot

«-*---

-&-

M:

Z

Jf

££

-

-iS 1

Basses

especially

melody,

the

in

still

in clear notes

he has found articulate glides into a serener

V?

s

of the

extending

farther

At

of song.

praise.

melody

*

•41

X-.



-P2-

m

And

last

so he

in a milder at-

Strings.

.g-^ri

m

i

±$±

fcafc

J

f

S

J J

J

d J

EE

r

r 171

#

-*--«- -#- -#-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

*

¥

*H

--

171 iiii

^~

m^

£5 *=i

^

tPT

-0-f

Lu

jSL

W:

-»-m

S

*

*=*

cresc.

±\ d * i+ElS

s

mosphere

melody in domdefiant, more feminine

(the official second

inant key), with less ring,

more of

refrain

pure, joyous abandon, joined in

of the whole orchestra, growing quite

conversational. still

be

Then,

as if

said, a little postscript

something must melody,

in

wood-

Strings.

WOODWIND. c=fcfc

2= JP

p

R



172

l~-j

sM 1 =P

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING wind and

strings, likewise

acclaim of

all.

integral text

All of which

and

secondary melodies

but there

;

is

repeated, as

is

The

more serious than the no uncertainty or droop-

is

tained continuously in the discussion first

main-

(all,

of the

humor, ending

in

in pro-

renewed

of exultant triumph, where articulate

burst

tune

is

of the secondary themes), varying

fundity, in sparkling

of the

latter*

In fact, the note of confident joy

ing.

full

of the whole, not as

tissue

mere incidental thoughts. former

sanctioned by

is

again lost in the vague intensity,

—when

suddenly, without a warning, the mysterious tripping

of the furious movement

with

early stealth,

its

and

leads, as

the burst of the final Allegro.

It

is,

re-enters

before, to I

suppose,

a sort of reminiscence of the early terror, in

make more

order to

Again, the triumphant song sounds,

victory. first

sure of the reality of the

vague, then defined

;

as the third

melody

appears in the tonic key, instead of the comple-

mentary,

home

we have

a queer feeling of nearing

more with the fourth in the same familiar region. But we must return once more to the happy strain of the episode.

Then

;

still

a bright, hilarious peal of the second 173

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING new rhythmic charm. From here movement is ever faster and faster

theme, with

on the

;

not feverish

joy

;

until

mere

;

assurance of highest

festal

the last theme

doubled speed.

faster,

Still

rehearsed with

is

into

a

final

\

\

re-

Presto. Strings.

_i

J

,

J

^J

fp

affirmance of the original

theme of assured

victory, extended into a complete close

we cannot

stop.

We

rush

on,

until,

endless vague reiterations, the end at last

merely come, because

may

reported to

is

have given

casually an interpretation

motto, "So

klopft das

Schicksal

("Thus Fate knocks

after

must.

it

have said that Beethoven

I

but

;

at

the

an

die

door").

of

his

Pforte" I

al-

that there most wish he had said nothing might be a perfect test and example of the power of music to define sentient truth, truth ;

of

feeling.

it is

Starting with Beethoven's words,

quite possible to build

ture of the strife of spirit

soon as the mind occupies 174

up a complete picBut as with fate. itself

with the de-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING tails

of an imaginative picture, the musical

tention flags.

It

cannot be

The purpose of

the master

entertainment

it

;

at-

literally translated. is

not a picture for

the communication of a

is

sentiment such as that under which great deeds are

done and genuine greatness

is

achieved,

which does not depend for its force upon The more closely we its minute definability. follow the music, the less we can stray from this true

meaning,

Remarkable with

content of sentiment.

this

as

the contrast of the Fifth

is

Symphony, its difference even more striking. Rebel-

Seventh

the

from the Third

is

lion against existing conventional tyranny

oppression

words or more,

is

not rare

in notes.

far

deeper,

in

Beethoven, whether in

But

there

the

in

and

is

something

Fifth

far

Symphony.

Whatever Beethoven may or may not have said, there is no resisting the convincing impression of a sense of dull, superhuman, over-

powering external tion,

of prayerful

Whether we have the burden

is

evil,

—of

faith,

hopeless supplica-

of assured triumph.

labels or not,

we

feel

that

that greatest of man's problems,

as in the tragedies of the Greeks, or in the re175

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Jew and

ligion of

tion

is

no

less

if set forth in

Kantian

logic.

it

of Job

himself,

cannot control character.

is

not

more

as

a triumph, moral, not

no power over man It

the solu-

It is as clear

and so much the more

physical,

man.

And

convincing, nay, far more so, than

words could make has

Christian.

specific

in

real.

Fate

the

inner

The book its

content.

But beyond all is the overwhelming power of music, which makes us feel it, not as a mere cold symbol, a statement, but as truth

176

itself.

VII SCHUBERT Schubert

is

at

once the most understandable

and the most mysterious of tone-poets.

It is

not eccentric to begin thus with a paradox, for

he himself was a living paradox, and the puzzle

His music always There is not the speaks direct to the feelings. psychological abstruseness of Bach and Beethohas

never

been solved.

ven, although there

is

much

suggestion of the

charm of deep searching for truth. Schubert is, without any doubt, far the most " popular" of the great masters, and in this mystic

position,

it

displaced.

seems, he will probably never be

We

ening to him

We

ing.

;

sit

do not knit our brows

we do

in list-

not wonder at his mean-

content in quiet

ecstasy, like

children listening to entrancing fairy stories.

But when we consider the poet

himself, the

machinery of the creation, so to speak, there seems to be no clue whatever.

composers 12

it is

With

all

other

possible analytically to discover 177

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING so-called causes, inheritances, traditions, influ-

ences,

from

and

far

broad and narrow. absolutely baffled. his career his daily

near, personal

With

Schubert

Since the

stand

all

of

To

he has been the great mystery.

companions, with

the

we

earliest years

the free abandon

of his good-fellowship, he was zige,"

and national,

still

" der Ein-

The

only one, the unexplained.

mystery was increased by the lack of correspondence between his person and his genius. bert's

presence

is

reported as insignificant.

had none of the heroic the delight in

Schu-

qualities

He

of Beethoven,

making an awful

impression.

any man the quality of pouring forth exquisite melody at such an extraordinary rate

But

in

would be marvellous. It seems just like some Schubert Tarnhelm, or magic gift in legend. had, it would seem, the most remarkable natural endowment for musical creation of all.

The only one is

Mozart.

to suggest close comparison here

Alike they had

this untiring,

almost

voracious impulse to write, Schubert in greater

measure, however. five

songs in a day.

He would write four He would finish one

and and

straightway begin another, often never seeing

them

again, once failing to recognize one a few 178

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING weeks

old.

to start this

The

was enough golden flow of melody. Schubert thinnest poetry

seems almost a passive instrument, obedient to

of some

the

voice

He

seemed to do hardly more than hold the

He

pen.

shall

external

utterly lacked the element

a Beethoven, a this

restless

Schumann, or a Brahms.

very difference, as repeat later,

advantage.

is

we have not at

of

And

an unmixed

Absolutely there seemed no limit

he could have

And, indeed, hundred and

toil

suggested, and

all

As Schumann

to the flow of his thought. said,

of

genius.

it

is

set

a placard to music.

curious that while in his six

thirty-four songs he duly recog-

nized the greatest poets, yet he set one after another of utterly worthless

libretti

for opera,

actually burying reams of great music in the

rubbish of bad verse.

The ill.

difference

from Mozart

Schubert rarely

good and reached the Olympian

mastery of Mozart, the

fruit

is

for

of early appren-

So he lacked the control, the sense of completeness. But Mozart had not that magic virtue of Schubert, of lighting on some touch of undreamt beauty which crowns the ticeship.

mystery. 179

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING After

all, it is

not the mere velocity of crea-

Much

tion that strikes us most.

have been equally industrious.*

new beauty

men

lesser

It is

the utterly

that Schubert surprises us with in

songs, piano, and

chamber works, and in symWhile Beethoven slowly chiselled

phonies.!

out his utterance, Schubert found his without

And

searching.

Schubert's art

is

it

more a wonderful

own

thought. it

of himself,

less part

tive,

But

seems to make

this that

gift,

less subjec-

separate

his

/

curious and significant

is

from

how

Bee-

thoven has that other quality which Schubert Schubert

lacks.

been

has

called

This does not

contrast with Beethoven.

in

seem happy. absence of

There

and

virility

human sympathy

no

is

loss

of vigor, no

But the broad

fire.

that Beethoven breathes in

* Schubert might have written

as

much on

plane, and have been deservedly forgotten.

work •j*

is

on such

Of

course, once a

is

how

a

lower

Part of his

a plane.

seldom content with Schubert

feminine

a

high

lower

he could

point attained, a poet

level.

rest so

But the wonder with

long on a mediocre level.

Apparently he trusted quite passively the true thought. 1

80

is

to

the arrival of

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING comes only from the hero who has struggled and conquered, and looks on in symhis Andantes

Schubert lacks

pathy.

but

we may be

The

would

reason

But

phonies.

was, alas

almost entirely

firmly persuaded that if he had

lived longer he it.

this

we in

certainly have achieved

symwhich

shall see later in his

the youthful

career,

the whole, he was the unconscious

!

seer rather than the

moral prophet and teacher.

In so far as Beethoven marks an advance from

Mozart

to a stage

where music expresses a

higher degree of profound meaning, Schubert relapses into a state of purely spontaneous inspiration.

And

yet, in

our hopeless paradox, Schubert

has elsewhere a striking resemblance to Beethoven.

We

Symphony

have suggested

the

subtle

in the

kinship

Seventh

between

the

melody in the song, " Death and the Maiden," on which he discourses at length in one of his famous quartets. To this same kind of magic melody belongs the Andante of Schubert's great C Major SymAllegretto and Schubert's

phony.

It is

of the vein, too,

in

which, as we

have seen, Beethoven often begins his symphonies, especially the third iSi

and the seventh, the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING quality so difficult to express in English

and meaning, that

sense of mystic depth

German poetry and philosophy tury, all

which must be

traditions is

of a philosophy built

filled

and of

modern English on geology. It

quite apparent in the beginning of Schubert's

Unfinished

Symphony

permeates the whole. a

the

early in the cen-

true of all times

nations, utterly opposed to

:

German

;

It

indeed, in a sense,

expresses not so

much

national feeling as a certain national

mission, or message of the

world through

And

music.

it

power of Music

in

to the

philosophy, poetry, and

their

here

Germans

is

seen again the resistless

such things,

in

intensify-

ing the deep poetry of Goethe, of Herder, of Schiller

;

in

beautifying,

in

idealizing

their

sentiment, in glorifying their profound vision.

Thus, through Schubert (and Beethoven) we actually understand better and feel

much more

strongly the thought of Fichte and Schelling,

of German Romantic philosophy.

He

gives

of that period of awakening the very essence of what Novalis

is

searching

for.

But the note in Schubert is not quite the same as in Beethoven it is more delicate, less sombre, softer, but true and sound, never ;

182

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING As we have

morbid or weak. thoven less

prophet, Schubert

is

But

of ethical leaven.

tensely poetic

it

;

is

is

said,

Bee-

if

He

seer.

his genius

has

is

in-

the essence of lyric

in-

Hence his greatness in song, not merely German his perfect settings of the

spiration.

;

highest lyric flights of a Goethe and a Shake-

But his quality was less adapted symphony, wherefore his true symphonies all the more wonderful. speare.

Like

Weber

terly unlike

in fresh romanticism,

him

in

Yet he had an

subjectivity

different

is

are

ut-

needing no outward objects

or stories for his fancy. tirely

he

to

en-

from Beethoven's,

purely lyric as against the heroic

and

epic.

Schubert in his moments mounted higher than

He

was the Shelley and Keats combined of music but they were usually mere moments, not continuous thought, on a high any.

;

plane, save in

these

two wonderful sympho-

nies.

We

cannot put Schubert

He

lyricist.

insight

with

is

his

as

mere

not lacking in the philosophic

of Goethe and

all

down

poetic

of Beethoven.

impulse he had

not

But so

powerful a grasp of poetic analysis as Beetho183

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING had a keener lyric intuition. This is seen in his endless, sometimes fruitless, strivings, the vacuous stretches in the C Major Symphony and in many piano works. ven, though he



seems as

It

if

he writes waiting for an

come while

spiration to

writing

;

in-

while Bee-

thoven writes directly to the point of melody or climax.

Some

on Schubert's indefinable personal quality comes from the feeling and poetry of historic and national surroundings. It

is

an age which,

poetry tic." if

light

is

commonly

music, philosophy, and

in

given the

This seems very

there

is

name

"

Roman-

like a blind guide

anything indeterminate,

for

;

the

is

it

"

Various definitions are Romantic" in art. given which do not even suggest the same idea. One from an intense Romanticist of that day Novalis, the poet-philosopher a very





mild description, pleasing manner.

shared the

we

shall

in

this

spirit

is

the art of surprising in a If

we

think of

(and of others

who

stumble upon a foothold. field,

who was

then thought

men who lacked

A

pioneer

far

important than Schubert, was Weber.

him we have

a clearer idea of the reaction. 184

it),

more

From But,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING first

of

all,

we must not

confine

Romanticism

to

any one period.

in

time or space about this pair of correla-

tives,



Classic

member

There

nothing fixed

is

We

and Romantic.

must

re-

Mozart was once Romantic, and Mendelssohn is generally thought Classic. Yet that

the term has so striking a significance at the

beginning of

this century, the contrast

Schubert and

Weber and

between

their predecessors

was

so great that the former will probably be for

time typical Romanticists.

all

There

a curiously ponderous sort of analysis

is

by Philipp

Romantic

Spitta of the

four ingredient elements, national, the comic,

of course, too fit



in Opera, in

the imaginative, the

and the

This

realistic.

definite for general use.

but one period, which, to be sure,

now

considering.

The

dual in this respect

:

truth

he

is

is,

change

all

time

in traditions

otherwise he

;

The same

is

we

are is

romantic towards

for

He

works permanency for

merely reactionary.

thought, the same feeling cannot

be uttered twice freshness

and

It will

each master

the past and classic for the future. for

is,

in succession

with the same

and spontaneous beauty.

out derogation to the past, a 185

So, with-

new poet must

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING As

create

anew.*

classic

poetry of the

room and need while

permanent

the

masters there was

earlier

And

Schubert's fancy.

for

for

classics

change

striking

who

are

all

against

posterity,

yet

the

Schubert from the masters,

in

were almost of his generation, makes him

and perennially Romantic. We might very well in the last two chapters have called Beethoven Romantic, in reaction from Mozart, perhaps with as great accuracy as any other master. Indeed, Beepeculiarly

thoven

is

We

often termed so.

saw him the

exponent of that remarkable shock given to men's minds by the French Revolution, which affected

staid

statesmen

as well

poets in verse and in tone.

as

sensitive

There was a violent

awakening from the peaceful,

childlike, playful

writing of sonatas for the salon.

Men

to be serious. qualities

This suggests one of the

may imply

realism.

It

is

ig-

in his ele-

that in the Romantic,

external beauty of form and outline

*

salient

of the Romantic which Novalis

nores and Spitta at most

ment of

were forced

is

over-

If Schubert had in any measure dethroned Beethoven

(not to impute to

him

have become the supreme

iconoclastic motives), he classic.

186

would

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING shadowed by the urgent intensity of mere emotional content. This might be called a rebelof realism

lion

against

The

formalism, but with

of

feeling,

of

inner meaning, and this formalism implies

no

great caution.

slur

on

After

is

beauty of form, which

real

pensable

realism

symptom and all, is

test

of true

is

an

indis-

feeling.

not every master's youth

strik-

Romantic age, when he reacts against the formal dominance of his predecessor ? Later he himself matures his form corresponds to in turn he becomes, in his his new meaning very pre-eminence, blighting to younger poets. ingly his

;

;

In Schubert's earlier works, especially for piano,

we

see a flight

formality,*

we

from the tyranny of sonatasee neglect of structural regu-

and beauty of proportion for the sake of some stray nugget of golden melody, or of

larity

was again an emphasis on inner content as against outer symmetry. Later, Schubert undoubtedly approached a finer lesser figure or turn.

unconscious utterance.

It

proportion

But he

between feeling and

neither lived nor

* Of course, this was unconscious many " Sonatas." 187

wrought

again, for he wrote

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING long enough to become in his turn a top-heavy

And we must

master of musical ceremony.

not forget

—we

shall

his final absorption

phony

most

;

be reminded of

it

later

and mastery of the sym-

significant,

whether

view

in the

of Schubert the master, or of the Symphony, as perennial channel

In the typical

of pure tonal poetry.

Romantic

reaction there

necessarily less of the repose to

homogeneous,

certain conscious stress

on

Romantic there is the which burdens the mind, the

which conduces

treatment,

finished

this

ter

fetters

leads to

own beauty. new emotion or drives

With

it

to a

a

In idea

more

expense

the true mas-

wrenching and bursting the

of tradition without

fundamental

with

its

definite utterance at all hazards, at the

of conventional precept.

is

artistic

principle,

Form

formal weakness.

real

violation

of

without actual

in the abstract

must

never be confused with concrete conventional

But with

forms. its

than complete mastery,

which Romantic inspiraimports of melodic fulness or power of

special

tion

less

strength

intimate definite

utterance, almost

involves

some weakness

ment,

discussion.

in

in outline, in

We 188

inevitably

develop-

have here, unintcn-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING come upon

tionally,

of Schubert.

But

shortcoming

a striking

this

weakness which shines

through six or seven insignificant symphonies,

which nearly neutralizes the glorious melody of many piano works, was finally conquered in

the achievement of

may

and

fitly

fairly

two symphonies,

that

rank with Beethoven's nine.

But we were thinking,

in the

Romantic

action of highest mastery, of Beethoven.

re-

With

was a cosmic movement. With Schubert and Weber the feeling was rather a national one, and it is so expressed in the new

him

it

quality of their melody.

Beethoven's melodic

most potent means lay in profound power of treatment and discussion. scope was larger

The

;

his

expressed a state of things which toric.

Weber now his-

national vein of Schubert and

It

came from

stirred the first

the

same impulse which

beginnings of

ture in a Lessing, a

Indeed,

its

on

the

different

German

united

downfall

final political

event of yesterday.

German

litera-

Wieland, a Herder, and a

Goethe, culminating in the nationalism

is

of

of Napoleon.

expression

Music

burst

suffered

is

but an

under a

tyranny from the French influence on literature.

There 189

it

was the

Italian

— ;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING domination (not unlike the German glamour to-day in America), and, through the Italian,

of the revived legends and heroes of Greek and

Roman

mythology.

Mozart,

in

Don

at last left the tiresome procession

Greeks,

who had

filled all

Giovanni,

of shadowy

early opera

;

as did

But neither had the courage to write a pure German name. The strong sense for reality of sentiment and for Beethoven

in

Fidelio.

dramatic truth in these operas does not constitute a distinct reaction

the tendency

;

gradual.

The Romantic

Weber.

He

suzerainty.

language,

came in boldly threw over the Welsh

Everything

titles,

is

titles,

freshly Teutonic,

legends, heroes

concern us in pure music.

No

rebellion

legends, characters.

But language, melody.

too

is

The

one can deny the

do not

question

is

of

Italian quality

Mozart the achievement in Beethoven of a more catholic or cosmic strain finally, in Schubert and Weber, the full blossoming of German lyric song in music, as with Goethe in verse. All this applies most directly His realm, where he was to Schubert's Lieder. lingering in

long supreme, is the

;

German folk-song, as against

the Italian Aria of earlier opera. 190

It

seems that

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Schubert, with

personal genius,

all his

came

at

the mathematical point of time to voice in

song the unuttered German national

feeling.

But the German quality of Schubert goes

And

deeper.

how

tion

we cannot escape the quessymphony is dependent upon

here

far the

the folk-song.

an immediate

I

can see no other answer than

relation,

—one

that tends to

the limits of original creation in

Goethe did not

sense,

song.

their

manner of

new

each

mark

In this

art.

create his lyrics, nor did

Neither invented the form, the metre

Burns.

of

far

their

They simply wrote own national folk-song. but a variation

lyric is

the

in

Thus on some old

fundamental type. In music this national quality

and pervasive.

sential

to

themes.

equally

The symphony,

group of great utterances sifted

is

in

high

art,

as

The theme

is

else

is

in

a

sense

a

can be

a discussion of a few melodies

All

es-

or

subsidiary.

the substance, the text.

Thus

the bearing of folk-song on the greatest masterpieces

is

ing of such a relation for cant

;

(The meanAmericans is signifi-

clearly all-important.

we may

return to

treated above, as

we

it

later.)

We

have

describe below in detail, 191

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING how

Schubert expressed in his symphonies a

which had a strong relation to a German poetry and philosophy.

feeling in

Far the most important career

what

is

seems

trait

of Schubert's

moral

his

spirit

through mastery of the symphony.

evolution

And

here

appears a wonderful, an entrancing, and a pro-

foundly important mystery in the relation of art

and

which

talent

Schubert was gifted with the

ethics.

made

sustained

rounded, perfect, unconscious culty

most

;

so he was morally difficult

if

outline a

endowed

to

in

diffi-

make

a certain balance, a thorough-

going completeness. weakness,

utterance

If he had yielded to his

he had become what moderns

call

would have followed the line of least resistance, have written still more songs, have perhaps devised some new shift of form, eminently suited to his capacities and defects. But this is exactly what Schubert did not do. He struggled through seven ineffective symphonies, where there is no rounding out into

a degenerate, he

unconscious completeness, where the melodic

But he did not yield in the double fight, of artistic and moral self-realization. And, finally, none too soon, inspirations are not justified.



192

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING In March, the

he achieved the double victory.

C

Major symphony was begun

Schubert died. every

in

quent of

way

November

in

;

symphony,

This, his tenth

is

typical, symbolic, directly elo-

this greatest

of heroic struggles, which

ought to come to every man, whereby the

ar-

becomes an expression of the moral, and whereby the corresponding art-work has perhaps, as its greatest value, this stamp of victory

tistic

ethical achievement.

should even say that,

I

where

this is

art or

poetry cannot be of permanent value.

Lacking

this

ing beauty principle is

not attained in

is

moral stamp,

artist

it

or poet, the

cannot have

last-

or rather in converse statement the

;

more

And

clearly borne out.

this

the most striking value of Schubert's career.

must bring with it a correction of the prevailing monstrous theory that genius

All

this, too,

involves abnormality.

Symphony,

B

Minor.

(Allegro Moderato.

{Unfinished.)

Andante con moto.)

The Unfinished Symphony

is

equally

markable, whether viewed in the whole ture of music, or merely in the bert's

works. 13

In the

first

193

re-

litera-

group of Schu-

place,

it

is

not, as

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING might be thought,

way

his

work

last

;

in

is

it

no

to be likened to the unfinished romances

of great novelists.

Yet, while written six years

before the end of his short career,

one

with perhaps

exception,

seems,

it

absolutely

his

highest level, which he did not distantly ap-

Then

proach for a long time.

it

is

somehow

strangely free from characteristic defects

which

troubled Schubert before and afterwards.

Nay,

it

seems marked by the very qualities

symphony which he most lacked

to the

where

essential

;

so that, of

unfinished,

all his

and the

last,

else-

nine symphonies, the

C

in

Major, are the

only ones generally performed.

The work

begins in a

way

some touches of Beethoven in

like (in

nothing save

the third and

the seventh symphonies), where

the

mysteriously foreshadows the melody. after all, the bass to

the

symphonic

ing

is

bass It

which you must look

is,

for

Schubert's lyric lean-

quality.

betrayed by a too frequent tendency to

But here Schushows his strong

run into accompanied melody. bert,

with

affinity for

off as a

all

the contrast,

We

Beethoven.

mere

lyricist.

The

in the bass strings: 194

cannot put him

legend-like

melody



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

W

Allegro moderato.

^4jg'

•gt

9-

&

pp

rm ?r

for

But the melody is too subtle First comes a quivering formal statement.

in

the

is

preparatory.

strings

(with

rhythmic

bass),

where

somewhere an indefinable melody is hovering. But presently, like a royal figure after his noble precursors, the real theme sounds high and clear, though in softest tone, in the woodwind Strings.

Oboe and Clarionet. .

PP V

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING while the herald-figures lapse into attendants.

Melodic separation seems, somehow, wrong.

To

drop theoretic phraseology for once, the

whole

a

like

is

continuous flow of melody

where each phrase seems chief before

until

it

pales

successor.

its

some overpowering

which preserve the prevailing tone of delicacy and lightness from monotonous sweetness, there So, after

clashes,

by the cellos, the most charmall music

glides in, borne

ing melody in Violas.

* *

Basses, pizz.

Melody

in

Cellos.

-S>-

=»:

r delicately all its

echoed high

perfect melody,

orchestration, the

shocks and poetry.

in the violins.

and the

movement

softest is

full

bursts, as if the essence

The

necessary vigor 196

is

With

and purest

of romantic

of legendary not lacking,

:

a

;

YMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

nor the true relation and balance of forte.

It

dolce

a mistake to view the

is

and

crashing

chords as mere interlude between the verses

poem

they are quite as real a part of the

any

But with

other.

all

as

the beauty of the

melodies and of the modulation (which was

what

Schubert's special

secret),

development,

the repeated statement of

melodies,

is

spontaneity,

after

is

called the

somehow perhaps of the highest although just here we might ex-

pect the greatest weakness.

A

motive from the

first

phrase

Violins.

X

#i

-«-



-m

-&-

Fagots and Violas.

pp

3ee

ife

-en-

-ttjg=5

^' treated in canon, rises to a dramatic climax in

which, added to the dynamic

effect, is

powering surprise of modulation.

an over-

Again and

again the tempest seems about to subside into the enchantment of the second melody, but 197

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING each time

it

rises to a

new

Now

height.

the

whole orchestra sound the answering phrase in unison then with the motive in the basses, the ;

strings

accompanying

in tremolo figure, a wild

perversion of their original melody, the whole orchestra thunders and storms in

about of the motive, where counterpoint

the

tossing

in the delicate,

Suddenly we are

mysterious atmosphere of the

melody, and so on through the second,

with a

final repetition

ure to the end.

of the original bass

The whole

is

tales,

quick, sharp succession of happenings, ill,

with no

The Andante the same vein.

room

with

good

for prosaic reflection.

begins more quietly, but

At

fig-

the final essence

of romance, the feeling of Arabian

and

of

secret

unconsciously invoked for the

is

most dramatic of passages. first

mad

the outset there

is

the

melodic bass Andante con moto.

1^ mm

pp

Basses an octave lower.

presaging the melody in the strings 198

it is

in

same

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings (with melody doubled above).

Indeed, the very quality of the tonal change

of Schubert's modu-

of scene

is

lation.

Throughout, the duet between the

characteristic

active staccato bass figure

of the violins

and the quiet gliding Perhaps

sustained.

is

dainty surprises of modulation that

it

is

its

somewhat

take the place of the dynamics in the Allegro.

Yet here tial

in the

sound

bering

in

suddenly

second page

in the trebles,

is

a sudden mar-

with a noisy lum-

the bass like the tread of giants,

thinning

pianissimo melody.

away

into

The whole

the

original

episode of the

theme departs with the same phrase which introduced it. Equally complete is that of the second. Preceded by a curiously promising rhythm in the strings, the clarionets sing a melody so simple that you wonder where the charm lies, first

199

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Quoting

will

not show

must the accompanying rhythm

be in large part in

and

it

;

the secret

of modulation.

in the exquisite turn

In-

melody at all, but melodic speech which might go on as long as the urging rhythm will hold out. In its later career it develops even more beauty, so that the beginning seems mere introduction. Suddeed,

is

it

not a

denly the vision

broken by loud sense

strict



at

loveliest

its



is

where we

crashes,

rudely lose

all

of connection with the past until we

recognize a noisy minor of the basses, which is

gloomy memory of

a

the second

melody

the storm rages furiously, but in a trice ends

rhythm which again promises the second melody in its true guise, this time exquisitely given in canon duet by Again there is here one of cellos and violins. with

the

enchanting

the highest passages in all

his genius

tion,

all

music

and rhythm, Schubert adds the uncon-

scene glides to the first,

wild,

because to

of melody, harmony, modula-

scious mastery of counterpoint.

at

;

first

Quietly the

melody, and then, as

through the various phases, gentle and

not

without

many new

which Schubert never

fails

200

touches with

to surprise.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING C Major The pervading bert's

works

and with

Symphony.

of

trait

this greatest

the large scale of

is

this a certain breadth

of Schu-

its

design,

and depth.

In-

seem the shallowest some modern work the tenth

deed, not only does

it

judgment to call symphony, so clear

the superiority of Schu-

bert's

last

to all

is

successors,

its

tempted to hold that

in

a

still

am

even

higher

(and

I

more

perilous) ranking of masterpieces,

bert's

C Major

Schu-

belongs in a small group which

would not contain all of Beethoven's symphonies. The C Major is certainly far superior to Beethoven's Pastoral, not to go further. So complete is this unity in Schubert's symphony, a unity transparent

in

its

very breadth

and depth and continuous purpose, that the first movement, with all its dimensions and supreme perfection of form, seems like a great fanfare,

prelude to the

rest.

The movement

itself

begins with a prologue,

Andante, in a curious prophetic

way

(like the

Impromptu for piano in C Minor), without charm of rhythm or wealth of harmony, alone in

solemn horns 20I

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Andante.

^m-

ii

^T-

pT

FpftrB

U

Horns.

-^T

f As

t

the strain

strings sing it is

I

like

is

W

taken up by others, and the

an answer

in

an invocation.

many-voiced hymn, Soon there is a loud

confident chorus in the original strain.

Then

a dainty answering melody from the oboe, with strange irruptions

on the gentle song by the

Woodwind. Tutti (with Drums).

Strings.

whole

orchestra,

alternation,



ever and again in eccentric

a kind of refusal to be committed 202

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING to

The

humor.

either

continuing

echoes,

through gray changes of tonal color, finally break into a clear melodious close in the original

key

slowly

;

the

prophetic

atmosphere

changes to one of joyful confidence. phrase

The

first

sung by the woodwind, with new

is

accompanying strings. The whole has some of that promise of coming rhythm which we saw in the prelude of the Seventh Symphony, and a similar gradual gathering of all to join in the great dance of the Allegro. There seemed to be in Beethoven and Schubert in the beginning of their sym-

movement

in

common

phonies a

feeling

which broke gently

cation to high purpose,

and with increasing

of solemn dedi-

momentum

into exuberant

song.

Suddenly there

is

a burst into that indefinite

joyousness, just like the Finale of Beethoven's Fifth in

The

its

literal

tions.

It is

vague and boisterous turbulence.

mind must have

uneasy without the

Otherwise, there spirits.

nies,

is

Indeed, this

above

its

all

scenery of the

too

much

official

themes.

barbaric high

some symphoUnfinished, what certain

work

to the

concrete tradi-

is

to

Rocky Mountains 203

is

to other

V —

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of the

You must

Italian Alps.

view

it

more

broadly, with larger angle of sight.

Here the noisy strum of the strings comes from an earlier phrase, alternating with a swelling vibration of the woodwind and horns Allegro

ma

non

troppo.

jj;n

4 4 4 4 m mrwrwrw ttj m -m~wrm -grarargnrar ~wrm~m m grgr 4 4 4 4 4 4_^2 ~m

Woodwind. ~

s

m E3^ J

lJ-«=

tz__ Horns.

Fagots.

Strings doubled above

-•-+

_____

Strings doubled, as before.

and below

'

But the only definite mood is just at the close, whence more light and more delight are Woodwind

(doubled above)

u

4-?

;

Bass and Drums.

—p —W&-— m~ fc£

£:

-<9~p-i

r~ > f -«-:

>s

Strings.

-at-

-1-

t

_?r

-«-•

-0r -9r

-4nr—4—4-

|gJZZIg_g^L_^ £3204

J^

a

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

i&U



33 -^

r

ts

?

1:

r-r

ii

fa

i-F-

^

i

X'

shed on the rehearsing of

earlier

melody.

goes the constant motion of the original in the strings,

On strain

with continual breaking in of the

jolly twittering of

woodwind and

horns, with

i 5 Strings doubled above.

ff

2 i" i. *E

Woodwind.

— w s V

»«p -3*— S»^ks "i-

MJ-

"if-

VV"i

VJ-: F-1

-0-

-»--

205

ii" i

*E

# «

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING answering

which

trumpet-calls,

increase

in

vehemence, with an occasional descent into

Then back

melody.

\Z

S^ B



P

when suddenly

a

t—^—A-jk %=%3fc

-m -#

_&.

JET"



Oboes, doubled below in Fagots

i

main rhythmic


^.

strain,

the

to

new

e tune, with strange

Brass sustaining the harmony.

;

ja=j

— — —— — —— i



-•

i

«

•-

P

iM&K ^feeS HE 5H ^— #

> o

Strings

^.

"0-

um. aSi

j

^

j-^y

s

#-

^\

/-

•#-r

'

g

w

_!•_)•:

?t?t 206

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

lUi

^r swing and accent, fagots.

and

It

is

heard in the oboes and

immediately taken up by

is

clarionets

in

higher pitch.

flutes

Then both

groups fight for the word, shouting and answering back.

Later there

is

a

new accent

in

whimsical humor.

Once strains,

swinging pace of answering

in a certain

with occasional intrusion of chord or

cadence from the whole chorus, and of straying

through cycles of tonal scenery, there seems to be no end, as

if all

time were before

us,

—what

made Schumann speak of the " heavenly length." At last, before returning to the beginning, we enter

on a broad, sweeping, universal cadence,

where the strings give the support of quivering rhythm. Thrice the phrase is sung, each time with greater emphasis

;

the highest summit,

absolutely conclusive

is

207

the

last,

ascending to

#

P

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Full Orchestra. Violins vibrating in unison with the respective wind-parts

;

Fagots doubling the melody below.

i 5

-i

Js. •



G>-

-&-

1-

# f*

111

J2L

m

=*ij

%?

-«?-

t

^F

%

j

J

ifajj doubled below.

m

J

:£:

4

i 1: s:

dS" -&*



^

*

t>

J

.a.

g ~S~

^

2Z

Sf

i

£ £ nil m

4 i

J.

~sr

"sr

PFP^

-<22_

-P2-

J

^

i i 208

J2

£=

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

ijijL_J_j jOL.

-&-

^ijll

I

think there

is

&L

JL j^L

±

no mistaking a Hungarian

flavor in the second

melody.

This rhythmic

touch of the Slavonic constantly appears, as elsewhere in

Schubert.

serves

It

to lend

greater breadth to the Teutonic vein

it

;

a

helps

us unconsciously to transcend the limits of mere national feeling.

Sometimes there seems to be a

characteristic

tendency towards extension instead of depth.

But

we have both there is surely no maze of discoursing themes. In

in reality

lack of the

;

the discussion proper, which begins after repeated

singing of melodies, there

nance of the Hungarian

at first a

is

elfish

with an added touch of

14

first

209

(second) melody,

Midsummer

Dream through Mendelssohn But the rhythm of the

predomiNight's

eyes.

melody constantly

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Oboes, doubled above in Flutes.

4e)

*

*\

*

*

— ¥^m U£

f

>-=»

I

i

i

C3t

[Emj

Strings with lower bass-note.

mm

s

fc=3=4

^T

an;

Oboes and Clarionets (joined by Fagots below).

WWW& J

I

1

"C-^^ £—Ll

Strings.

intrudes in the strings, always alternating with

the strain of the elves through magic changes

of light. -^

But the rougher rhythm

Violins and Violas.

n*

? p k^

s^

J. *

reinforced,

ud i

3§B# :

is



m

Cellos and Basses.

^ 2IO

^ f

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING striding

up and down

in contrary

motion, each

way in double ranks, until with its multitudinous movement it seems to triumph, although the daintier sorts

of

rhythm lights

is

never

lost.

On

through

all

and shades of tonal landscape,

into a series of delicious suspended discords (of

which Schumann later learned the special trick), while the rough motion of the first theme is drawn out

in length until against the various

dance of the

rest

the bass in strings and brass

solemnly sounding

E

its

is

legend

A-

U 3

fej--

3

ff Doubled above and below.

In a sudden

lull

from the resounding chorus

the same series of exquisite discords

most

lightly,

is

heard

with melodious question and an-

swer between voices in woodwind and strings Flutes.

Violins sustained by Clarionets.

p

Cellos and Fagots. 211

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

Cellos and Basses

Finally, again the lower strings, joined later

by

higher clarionets, sing the solemn chant against

quivering violins, Fagots

in

a

cadence whence the

sustaining the harmony.

±U±U +U+U Doubled above and below

iUili original

end.

song of melodies

It is

all

iUin is

rehearsed to the

quite the same as at

first,

but

magnified and heightened in the brilliancy of 212

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING mad

responsive song of tunes, in the

of movement

;

above

of what musicians

all in

the wonderful play

modulation, of tonal

call

color, like the magician's dazzling

chromatic last

final

All

light.

word, best of

the

is

change of

same except the

Where we

all.

abandon

expect the

chord, the whole chorus break in confident,

joyful tone into the

Somehow,

melody of the invocation.

timidity, questioning,

the clear assurance of

longer Invocation

rounded

its

it is

;

is

With

gone.

close,

it is

no

the Fulfilment.

Andante con Moto.

At

last

has a vent.

motion,

golden

To

As

the Allegro was

this is pure,

vague

—one

fabric.

" explain" this lyric

its

all

continuous melody,

gem seems



nent for two opposite reasons,

and

melody

Schubert's long restrained

mystery.

It is

the master himself.

puzzling

blending

deep meaning.

At

a restrained dance.

its

imperti-

simplicity

the typical paradox of

There

is,

throughout, the

humor with

of lightest the outset

But

there

it

is

seems clearly

no escaping

the sense of secret meaning, as in Beethoven's

Allegretto of the seventh 213

symphony, and

espe-



#

J





*

;

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING cially in these first six bars, where, similarly, the

tuneful bass foreshadows the Andante con

coming melody

moto.

Strings. :2:



^=i •

-*- -ih

— 0-

—#

»—

-n_=j_^_

(•

« *

#i=*

0-

t

i ?

**-^





m-*-*--*?-+

M

-m

9H



E Then

j—

ku

teata

f

same sprightly step comes the song of principal melody by oboe to the

Oboe.



1 -£







at£E

:



|J

J: -•

#-

ffff Strings.

'-*-—*

f 214

#

-0- -0- -0-

I

w*

J

0~ +-

L_i

^:=?—=1-



^

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

# ^y

JrJ-J.j^^ —— — #-*——*— •-—

rr *'

feL

V^

S

_£.

Z:

it*,

-#F-

-#F-

-#r-

?



If

.

.

4-J

i

J

pi-

i !

rm





fL.

»-

-Is-

# ^

=]

-»--»- -»-

r

r

i

*

rffr



-

^ With sustaining Fagots and Horns.

we

we mixture of minor mood

cared to analyze

could see

how

the

more

technically,

with sprightly gait helps the mystery.

But,

usually, in groping for ingredients, in tearing

apart

the

rose-petals,

the

main fragrance

is

lost.

But the curious impersonal quality of the melody is seen by contrast in the little concluding strain in friendly major, with a clear,

sudden touch of like the

human

feeling.

Again,

Trio in the Beethoven Allegretto 215

it

is

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

But in the next boisterous blast of the whole band and in the striding of strings in mock heroic dignity, there is no doubt the childlike, TUTTI.

I ¥

»—3—sffz

^

;.#.. -#-#/-

1 playful

humor,

« ^r£3

£

pure

warning signs to hold our the serious beauty of the it

is

now

not the

whence, through

fun,

first

faces, first

song

216

in

we

return to

melody.

Still,

doubling duet

T SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING but there

the daintiest interplay between the

is

phrases of gentlest

mockery

:

Oboe and Clarionet.

Strings.

44-

J

jr^r

J

T—

...

f

t 'In octaves.

How music

wonderful

humor.

for mirroring

power of Could any words,

the versatile

is

spoken or written, possibly approach remotely its

delicate changes?

merriment

is

so apparent, yet, after these four

accented warning lightness of fancy,

Teuton

fun.

Here, while the boisterous

E's,

with

there

It is all

is

all

the delicious

not a touch of

Oriental fantasy.

Those

move through various contrasting rounds Again there a third mood is upon us.

phases until

no doubt of the meaning. And, again, it is what we had thought a special Schumann feeling. It is, too, a good instance of the way the is

greatest masters are constantly using the simplest 217

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING themes,



the

with highest

Nothing

art.

To

four notes.

do with

more natural than

is

this descent

of

be sure, the preliminary step

down two

of the bass

of simplicity

union

proverbial

full

much

tones has

to

it all.

Flutes and Oboes.

Clarionets.

Horns and Fagots.

a

^J^= "\

jQ~

i

f

^r

i Violas.

_3j^

-<5>-

r

f-f

VlOLINS.

P/3J

1 r

r

f

r

Cellos and Fagots.

Cellos and Basses.

fe=i= s J=^ br* f

Now gone.

all

T # _#.

mystery of

Here

is

S

^^B*-— •*—-^L-

spirit

an intimate,

unter vier Augen, as the

f land

is

human

absolutely

dialogue,

Germans say

218

;

and the

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING little

endings, always recurring

repeated

like

friendly greetings, with assurance of good-will Woodwind doubled above.

jgjJEgli P

T

B-fcV-4m



m

i

».

«t

-\

iSsf

But immediately with the descent there

is

momentary

the

slight transition to the

For the moment there a playful strain, hiding the head

hazier realm. in

into minor,

fashion.

Then through

Clarionet

and Fagot

is

a refuge

in ostrich

curiously repeated warn-

below.

Oboe. IN

SE pp

w^

f

Strings.

,"

tr

# ing notes

J3.

P

t:

held

unchanged, through shifting

harmonic scenery,

in

the 219

horns,

heralds

of



:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING legends,

we

Arabian

fairy story.

Now oboe

back

in

another canto of our

melody of

to the original mysterious

added

is

violins, a

still

like a child

Media

are

horns and trumpets,

in

lighter playfulness.

later in

It is

a

little

playing in the midst of danger,

in vita> etc.

Oboe

-=1

f The

H

Brass.

Strings

*

side tunes

grow

^^0

Octave lower in Horns.

-#-

-0-

t

£=§£r

ever

more melodious.

r

So again come the other phases, riched.

When

J53

-#-

^

S m 4 »

similarly en-

next the humorous episode

comes round, with the sudden noisy burst and the strutting of strings,

The woodwind

it

minor

in a

is

much

blast

extended.

seems to have

a difference of opinion with the strings in the major.

All through there

dency to amplify, to

is

repeat, to

the evident ten-

hold the floor

inevitably the old Schubert trick of talking for 220

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING an

There are strange strokes of the

inspiration.

whole orchestra

in unison, alternating

ominous chord, which ping up and down

interrupt the

with an

merry skip-

i

=F=F Strings and Wood.

Brass and Wood.

fe£

f=dF=^

^=t

S &

Strings doubled above.

S Brass,

i

iff

T\ 3

FF

!*

I*

#-•-#-*..

riTZgr^ Strings doubled below.

This continues in almost pure

iteration,

with

hardly perceptible variation, always with interrupting chords arresting

ment, until

we

the skipping move-

feel ourselves

unexpectedly rush-

ing somewhere, with increasing violence, at last leaping furiously on a final height. 221

*

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING And

here

We

nugget.

again that best of all, that golden

is

knew

it

would come

Schubert

if

would hold on,

like the angler playing patiently

for his trout.

Of

a sudden, out of the wild,

mad

chord of

insistent

questioning,

after

a

complete pause, comes a transformation of scene or mood.

Instinctively

we

feel

we must

A

not inquire into the magic of the master.

sudden change of tonal color, whose

nowhere

in music, brings a

new

like

is

strain in the

Strings alone.

a

pizz.

.

^^

.

-0

^rqr pp

b?

arco

r^.++* 3=

*-: z^zzp: Octave lower. pizz.

» B -#-

1=*=

-»—

b?



S

M*

—*-

a

^F*

"-#=}

F-*

t

# r

*-r-

•—*—*-

s 222

£'

S;

te

£

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING cellos

on a former subject

simplest con-

in

fidence.

There was a subtle way of smallest

step

through secret spring

as

No

the transformation.

spring save Schubert first

;

one knew

with him

the

time,

mournful minor

;

the

change or journey, the greater

slighter the outer

The

by

transition

close

it

is

this secret

died.

dreamily

in

the second, with the same

;

confiding song, the close

the clearest reas-

is

surance of serene major, whence

we continue

directly into another verse in the friendly strain

of the second melody, with

its artless,

homely

phrase.

A keen among

man

of literary power has suggested,

his friends, a classing

of composers

in

The Prophet 2d, The Counsellor 3d, The Friend 4th, The Tempter. And we are reminded of it It is exactly true. some such way

as

st,

l

:

;

by

;

;

the analogous variety of relation

master.

Clearly Schubert has at

first

in

one

more of

the impersonal seer, even stern monitor, and

then quickly glides into

friendliest,

soothing

So comes again the momentary strain of playfulness again the warning herald notes speech.

;

in the

horn of the »

final verse 223

of the fanciful

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There

legend.

now

is

ornament and rhythm, words, as

a

halting in

add a certain

if to

The dance

a curious chariness in the last

insistent sincerity.

has almost ceased.

no longer the child playing in the lightning. It is more reflective, with a fine little envoi, a minor memory of an old

strain.

marches up the Oboe

hill



It is

With kindly humor, and down again

it

(joined by Clarionet and Flute).

r

Strings

x.

[pizzicato).

B -9-

=e

#A--

n£ 224

r

—r*

L

*



-#•

"1

|i

-g -

(=

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Scherzo, Allegro Vivace.

We that

are so

difficult

is

it

accustomed to humor to think of

humor

in

music

is

suppose,

I

To

almost incredible.

cuss such a question

to be

is

drawn

endless perambulation, losing our

words

utterance

its

To some,

through another medium.

in

dis-

into an

way

utterly

from the central purpose. The trouble lies largely Sometimes in the scope of the word humor. it

does seem that, while for the expression of

feeling

music

far the

is

most powerful of the

humorous utterance is easiest But here it would become necessary arts,

in

prose.

to distin-

guish elements of humor, or at least different

where the danger of straying looms

kinds,

greater than ever.

say that light,

It

may

when humor

is

not be too broad to

merry sentiment, music

natural

medium.

accustomed

to,

Much

compact of still the more

largely is

of the humor we are

seems largely a game, with a

jumbling together of concrete things, where

by accident a striking contrast results. There is much more of chance here than of original, creative feeling.

It necessarily lies

out of the

bounds of music, which has naught to do with visible realities. 15

225

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Humor, of

as in a conventional sense, the rut

common

minds,

is

game

a meaningless

;

no more important than in

another sense

need the highest power of

may

it

human thought and

utterance.

The

sudden contrast

instinct for surprise, for

of opposites, has certainly a

The very

free field in music.

of the secular masters, Haydn,

first

was eminently a humorist.

I

have seen a

Haydn

musical child laugh involuntarily over a Beethoven's

scherzo. It

humor we have

was not altogether amusing.

compounding of serious the show of lightness. It

It is that rare

latent is

studied.

purpose with

not cynical

for a

;

warped, a hopeless sentiment cannot be uttered in

high

If

art.

it

could, Offenbach

Sardonic

a classic.

it

can

fairly

would be

be called

;

and

thus music again shows a distinction of feeling

more

Between the of humor of Beethoven and of Offen-

clearly

qualities

than any words.

bach, not to speak at infinite gulf.

often.

But it is

of the strength,

Sinister, even, it is all,

like Aristophanes,

speare,

all

an

Beethoven appears

like other universal minds,

like Cervantes, like

discoursing, in apparent play,

highest themes.

is

It is in central

226

Shake-

on the

purpose neither

;

;

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

nor despondent.

light

symphony is temporary gloom of

frivolous dance in

the seventh

really a

the

the

triumph

final

We

all

cosmic joy

fifth

makes the

the brighter.

cannot pretend that Schubert has herein

Nor can Schubert had striking humor

any

similarity to Beethoven.

said

that

should not

call

He

him humorist.

it

be

we

;

had not

the

keen power of conjuring strange oppo-

sites

;

He

was not disciplined

sion.

So it seems his scherzo mood lapses mere merriment, not sharply distinct from

into

the

comic was not

his favorite element. in

its

special expres-

other allegro feeling save perhaps in

irre-

its

sponsible lightness Scherzo. Allegro vivace.

3

i

r

-^

-*-•

'

"f-J-f

fa

Strings.

Doubled below in two

octaves.

This theme of the scherzo its

strikes

us,

in

unison, with a certain clownish heaviness,

woodwind, with playful drums beating clumsily at the theme lightly

answered

in the

227

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Flutes. Oboes.

8va...

FS—SRP- -#

P

f

Horns. £2-

3^

Z3tr

FFrFf Drums. It

—— #

j±±± •

g-=

£

Hi ^J ?= rrr

rushes with headlong speed to a climax in key, whence, while

a cousin fagots are

still

chattering

clarionets

away

at the

the violins and cellos have a duet in a

where play

is

and

theme,

melody

more blended with romance.

But again the boisterous

spirit

dominates.

Its

further career, the bass ponderously dancing to

the quick theme, seems

motion,

all

when suddenly

committed to noisy

the elf feeling, which

gleamed here and there in the first movement, dances forth alone from the earlier turbulence Oboes and Clarionets.

kull Fagots and Violas. 228

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING j£

M4

-*—*-

»^1Lm wtm

.#

i

£

r

U

x

x

=» ZZBEEg Eg p— Zg-|g f !

!

'

'

'

9

«_

S^£ Cellos.

I

Doubled above.

Strings.

— nt=f

i-

j

-&-

eJ

U

m at And

u

-&-

dz

feff

so through jolly

laughing

once the

mocking of

wood and buzzing latter

strings.

piping,

All at

have dwindled to strumming of

dance beat, and the

flute sings

aloft

a

clear,

Woodwind.

X,

T

pp

4

jft

#

Strings, with initial beat in basses.

229

W^ f^

IP

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING gentle song, and in a

new

scene in the forest,

by one of those unpremeditated tone changes of the

poet's.

And now

same song is heard in another corner of the wood, from the oboe, but more boisterously, until the dance can no longer be restrained, and the old fun breaks out much more freely and stormily than before. With the

the Titanic horse-play there

nation of daintiest talk of violins,

is

the sharp alter-

sprites,

each having his say

in

mostly of

turn

the

in

J?*En

phrase, ending the scherzo

In the

burst.

clearly not

Trio,

down

seasons.

it

is

still

more

A

lost.

poet cannot be

to cracking jokes at certain fixed

There

subtlest jesting.

belong

though

in the original

humorous, we have surely gained

more than we have held

much

is

something

And who

in a scherzo ?

The

he double charm of an 230

finer here

shall say first

it

does not

impression

eternal,

than

is

of

joyous swin#

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and a

clear,

simple song.

places where

we suddenly

in the orchestra. trast



is

one of those

human way there

singing

hear

In every

with the preceding,

in the

It

is

con-

in the gentle gliding,

sweet simplicity of the song, in every

way save one though we cannot Somehow, the rate of movement ;

clearly see. is

exactly

same as before, under different guise. The charm of the constant, swinging, sweeping motion, of greatest speed with least show of like the march of a effort, is indescribable, the



big Niagara, like the planets themselves. tinct

Dis-

from the song, the swinging pace

is

double, the even gliding phrase of violins, ever

Or rather constant mingling of two distinct

ending with the skip of the brass. it

is

the

paces, the glide

and the

now

is

ear

the other

of the hearer.

in

skip,

relief,

One

where now one,

according to the

supplies the continuous

element of perennial go, the other gives the perpetual

fillip

of new impulse.

And

in united

woodwind, blending the various motion

is

the

broad sweep of the great universal love-song, too big for fragmental discussion, pouring out verse after verse, a stream of purest melody,

without economy of themal logic 231

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Woodwind

(doubled above).

4s&rf -gK

y

Bd ^ ? 1*

%

"25T

Brass.

U

AJi

:3zs:

E

22B

"N

I

#=•R z*

fe?

<^—


-za-vj

v>.

And

J

S

F

with

this

F

I

'^- 5Hi=F

r

M

za-

r

14 £1

X

d

TPf ^ ^3t

Strings. -""„

m te

17*

"T

8

~gr

faithful

1

4Ei a=ut

-#-

*—

*-

f-f

accompaniment of

motion the song continues fe*hd

HHfc* ft

Then

^

t

St

--

u-sr-

s:

:

*—

fe

»-

-25Hr

ts:

2:

off into the minor, always with the

loyal satellites, with the 232

same sweep, and with

*

L

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING all

the events of a song, surprises of tonal

of closes that do not end, of those

color,

special intimate asides of Schubert's

Woodwind.

4—1-



-4— "

^i=4

=^-

ill"

=^#

r

P •gr

58

g

Tf

£*:

3t

#

*



t-K-J-4

f

J :

-*-

tr

MUz±

iz-

-<

g

f 233

-*-

-*-*

f

ff

-111

i

^.

i

-=i##f-

-K-

1-

-*-

-*—

V



-£2-

"Strings.

x.

-isW-

:*z£2

1 4= ?

-*-

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Here a broader swing than ever

bursts forth

Woodwind, doubled above and below.

Earlier double rhythm in strings and brass. I

all

with pervading completeness and perennial

freshness, that full

hopeless to suggest without

is

Always the dainty

quotation.

reserve

and

the broad pealing forth, each inviting the other

why

There seems no reason

in turn.

end, except that

all

things end.

In

it

should all

this

never varying continuity of subsidiary motion,

and the constant swing of the song, changing only

in

its

own

burden, there

of freedom from

Never before

restraint

a great sense

is

and commotion.

or since has a master so ignored

the element of discussion.

We

feel

we have

reached an empyrean of lyric song which

above

all

mystery, above even questioning and

the need of discourse. is

is

The

fall

almost that of the proverb,

the sublime to the humorous. 234

to the scherzo



certainly

from

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Finale, Allegro Vivace.

We ing

have followed the symphony so

little

of a general plan.

It is

far, say-

perhaps

less

apparent than in the great Beethoven poems, the Eroica, the Fifth and Seventh Symphonies.

But while we might easily have guessed a general meaning earlier, it is, after all, our rule to cloud the evidence of the music itself as little as

possible

rather

to

with

our

own

preconception,

have the pervading quality break

upon us unwitting, convincing us with the reinforced evidence from all regions of the work.

But inevitably the first sounds of the Finale bring us back to the broad scale of the beginning. It is the same vague carelessness of Finale. Allegro vivace.

m* m

Doubled above and two octaves below. 235

-*-f-=-f-

ff

P Strings. -*-Mrf-

ist ending.

£

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING 2d ending.

m

i t>

w

t=9

il

l

rr
Strings.

—f^~

g

-

*£p£

£

MP

H*=iH*



articulate tune

#-

do.

;

fearlessness

of an expressive ever-impelling

strain

drive

;

that

vagueness of utterance for

of endless iteration

a perpetual

go

knows no its

own

an

;

rest

;

a

sake.

The first approach to definite phrase (strange how in defined expression there is at once a is descent from the very joy we are uttering !)

in the oboes,

doubled by fagots below, while

the violins keep

up the

ceaseless flow

of motion,

and the basses and the horns give the motive impulse,

adding

rhythm of the

something of the

Trio 236

pulsing

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings (the melody played and Fagots below).

in quarter-notes

by Oboes,

*W

Horns.

JTH

J

J ft B ^=*5gS=s

J

i

-&m-

--

m

t "N

Most of

the

£L

charm must

lie in

endless, pleasant motion, like the

journey or ocean voyage. Trio9 the

the sense of first

And,

as

railroad in

accompanying movement once

lished, the

song sweeps

the

estab-

freely along, singing

its

burden, without heed of other voices

ifiMw

.

J

j

i

j

237

ii*£

i

i.

i

hi£.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING boldly

soaring

into

and

higher

higher

still

and ever the unceasing rush of coursing violins and pelting horns until there is an

flights,

unheard denly

of,

we

cadences,

momentum.

overpowering

are in the

first

whence we

Sud-

phrase, with answering

find ourselves in episodes

of sheer drive Woodwind

>o

(doubled below).

#

^f

&r

1

t

-

ft r*.

Tutti.

ft

fi

i~&-

f

Brass.

Strings (doubled above and below).

The profound

discourse of polyphony, even

the lyric distinctness of melody, are in this

onward,

At most,

restless,

there are

and

all

forgotten

ceaseless coursing.

some such answering

strains

which immediately follows the last quoted phrase. Oft reiterated are these pounding passages of pure, rushing rhythm all carried to a furious climax, where the wind hold a long as

that

238

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Woodwind

(doubled an octave above and below)

m t^ *3

m 9

1^5=1

o

=PT-«-£~-«

\L3 Brass.

ff

fa



±=t *-£

'$&-

fa-

fa-

Strings (doubled an octave above and below).

sh TX=^

I

1 S

#

r

11

r

m

fa

-i=^==t

chord, while strings and their

momentum on

abruptly in a crash

drums

are exhausting

the simplest figure, ending

:

Doubled twice below.

After a

lull,

during which you can almost

hear the drive as you see the sun with closed 239

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING eyes, suddenly here

heart of the like

the melodic germ, the

is

movement, always

gold to the miner,

after those

merings of Schubert. the

old

above

all,

here,

It

a

is

come,

long ham-

miniature of

thumping, as of shadowy

gigantic

But the grace

imps.

sure to

rarer

is

than before, and,

out of the four long notes,

a song proceeds, clear and

human

Oboes and Clarionets Clarionets.

(doubled below in Fagots).

&a ? r

r-

t

S-

T

f

•^

Violins. Violas.

m -3^* m

Horns.

f^r^f

*N

Cellos and Basses.

75T -#*-

t

M

6 T"

i^E E&* 34

feEiS 240

f

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING -I-

*F=f -#*-

M r=r

i

T~W

7



=3=4 ~\

1

V0

*

All the pent-up vagueness has found speech, in

which

it

glories, exults, revels, first timidly

whispering, then with involuntary burst, retiring

again into almost inaudible recesses and hidden scenes

;

suddenly breaking forth into clear light

with glad presence, with unrestrained shouts,

and

supported with this

all

Indeed,

we cannot

let

returns to the older,

out for the gladder

and

—we

get

it.

it

go.

stiffer

irresistible

When

dance.

the poet

movement, we cry

step, as for a native

Just those four

notes with the clattering course.

element,

hammering

And we

are

happy in the mere motion, in all guises, higher and higher now thundering near by, now humming far off, at last with a seeming end in the ;



broad cadence, while the violins are vibrating

m

Woodwind and Brass

$3

sfc

(doubled above and below).

241

4-

m



SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING same tune and the low horns and strings But instead of holding up the harmony.

to the are

ending, the latter basses are shouting out the

tune a

little

varied, while the others are not so

^t-t-r*-*r^ w~\ Doubled below.

important, diminishing in violence and repeating

more

softly,

woodwind soon

while the high

take courage and join the tune in piping pitch.

But soon we are in a mere vague hum of the low strings, while some wood and brass notes are hopping faintly at the old dance.* And thus dying down to a murmur, we are willing to wake suddenly and, returning to the beginning, go through the glad frolic again. When that We can is over we sit down and think it over. now be a little reflective. So we toss the fine tune, now our own by long search, about here and

there, while

movement

is

reduced to the

least shuffling in the strings, suggestive,

true,

of the old rhythm. Very

* The hearer must not be

He

literal

softly, in a

is

new

nor too consistent.

must follow about with quick sympathy of 242

it

insight.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING we

scenic spot,

an answering

sing the song and quietly add

strain

Clarionets.

u

X,

¥pm "b~

u=

i

Strings.

TF

i

P

'

F

-^m

r

I

*=

H

1-

H

h

* Flutes.

s » rb—z*

i

-g-t

1A

'

£2>

*—te 1

Oboes.

J

cn:

3

54

-=*—&-

Octave above in

tit

flutes,

Nt—^

w i

Li?

r

tit f=* below in fagots

^

£

J:

J-5

*

4*

-#-=-#

f±t

E 243

-4-*

3EI3E

f

jh

"N

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The whole atmosphere

is

changed.

There

is

shadowy gloom of deepening woods, of coming dusk. The air is cooler. There is a half sadness of reflection as bits of the theme

a

occur here and there, fused, jumbling



in

minor, too, in con-

comparison with others.

dreaminess the dance

is

almost gone.

In the

But soon

new energy appears. The high violins sing the melody with a kind of trembling anxiousa

Strings.

i

4t:

>$*£ gs-

m

UUUL pp

pp ness,

still

higher,

sistently, the

more

plaintively

wind gradually joining 244

and in

in-

sym-

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING pathy, finally, almost in triumph.

And now

the glorious old psean sounds out in basses and brass rest

assurance), while the

(giving increased

shout

acclaim

in fervent

Strings.

*

i

life 5

£:

ff

-&-

&

-£•--

X"

r

r-

ft

Basses in Strings

and Brass. Tutti,

»

ff #-



with octave below.

-#-

--£-

£ f

^

Here it is one long triumphal procession. Nothing can describe the terrible magnificence of this elemental dance. The very ground under us

is

rocking to the rhythm, not to

speak of the increasing

maze of

245

voices singing

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the answering phrases in disjointed confusion.

When

at its height, the cellos are discovered

very softly but firmly sustaining the marching song, while the violins are mockingly strutting about

oboes and fagots are gently sing-

;

new melody in unconscious harmony with the rest. The only ominous figures are ing a

the

drums beating

They soon faintly,

softly

betray their

then

more

and continuously.

purpose, when,

insistently,

the

first

motive

is

ft heard

summoning

all

gradually back, trooping

more and more tumultuously, once again

to

the original chorus Tutti,

Oboes (with Fagots below).

doubled above. V"

£:

J-

H& ff

f=t-

~2Sl

^

&-

£

Cellos. Violi

With

fr -& Basses

^

ik

P-

sus taining

m and Drums. 246

m *&. i

Horns

3F

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

f m

*LJ ^ f r

^

The is

final refrain

in the usual

*

-t^-

-

of the old order of melodies

broad

spirit.

The

smooth

first

melody of the woodwind is often rehearsed in minor, to ascend the more joyfully into corresponding major.

After

all

the prelude and

actual entrance of the great phrase of childlike

triumph, there

is

the loud singing of the

smooth

melody in the basses, again dying down to a lull. But from here on it is little more than ever eager cries of the great melody, in

first

part

and second.

the former

comes

sheer hard

in

Towards the end, four mighty thumps in

unison tones (almost unmusical), followed by four chords shouting in answer,

—question and

answer recurring again and again, lapsing into the broad cadence.

phony ends

in the

Then

trumpet

at last

the whole sym-

calls

which begin

the last Allegro, and in the spirit of fanfare

which began and pervades the whole. 247

VIII

SCHUMANN

^

It

is

a most interesting question just what

and where

is

the greatest

and

work of any poet

is,

of course, closely akin

to the secret, perhaps

unfathomable, of Art

or musician,

it

itself.

We error

;

are apt

to

to fall

into a rather palpable

confound greatness

greatness in substance

;

in

dimensions with

to think that the longest

works, or those on the largest scale, or those on

which the poet has most was most ambitious, pieces.

We

have

all

toiled, or

of which he

are necessarily his master-

heard the famous advice

to destroy whatever seems in the writing

most

happy.

The

question

is, it

seems,

than has been supposed. that just as

some men, very

respects, perhaps in

many

much more

no doubt others in most

There like

is

inferior, for

248

hidden

more valuthe same man, for

reasons will utter thoughts infinitely able to the world, just so

subtle

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING reasons occult to himself, will at times be a

Much

prophet, at others a bore.

much

of Beethoven,

not the given

all,

stress,

not the

real Schubert, is

Perhaps

Beethoven.

real

back, after

is

of Schubert,

to the quality

all

it

we have

—unconsciousness.

It is

so often

the strange,

almost contradictory element of tonal particular.

thought

It

is

comes

art

in

seems that the best of man's

when he is not watching no man can work his highest,

uttered

himself; that

with a perfect knowledge of the existing conditions of his art

;

so that

seems almost true

it

advice to a poet to reject his

There seems to be a conscious

Where

is

secret

then our

art,

magic Yet,

deliberation.

own judgment. in the lack

we

are

of

asked,

our hard achieved mas-

we are not to use it as resource in our The answer comes with inevitable ?

tery, if

design

iteration full

;

all this

past struggle

and mastery has

weight, but only as unconscious resource,

as experience rather than study.

So

advice here to dispense with

to shout forth

our

first

toil,

there

is

no

wild emotion, without care of clear

more we toil in reverent pursuit of our art, the more powerful we are for unpremeditated utterance. It is, on and

true expression

;

for the

249

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the contrary, the one

mastery,

who

who

most often driven and padding labor. that, never relaxed,

to deliberate calculation It

the early discipline

is

indispensable for true

is

enter into all art, at

first

was

toil, later

forgotten in the joy of utterance.

founded on

that

The element of work, which

spontaneity.

is

art,

produces the perfect mastery

of language, which

must

respect to his

fails in this

is

lacks the patience for

this

While

hidden basis of early apprentice-

work must spring from an involuntary feeling, must not be too compact of ship, a true art

conscious care. It is

thus an absorbing question

the greatest

Schumann

It

?

Where

:

is

seems, sometimes,

that his genius did not find perfect content in

the forms hallowed

him

;

that he

may

by

the highest art before

have turned to them

spirit

of challenge, to show

show

the

maze of such

in

To

his mettle.

a problem,



it is

a

quite

possible to hold that

his

symphonies are

whole passages of more beautiful than any of

his

shorter works,

and yet

latter

may

be superior.

that, as

a whole, the

There

a tremendous

is

responsibility about large dimensions

;

long episode of the greatest perfection 250

so that a

may

be

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING by

actually neutralized

and

relation

of the

failure

in

proportion

rest.

Schumann's was a poet nature of the sharpest individuality, yet, withal, so deep and versatile, that we have no sooner found the typical trait than

we seem

to see

of several other

it

with equal truth in each

qualities.

One of

the most

power of definite characterization. Of course, the mention of such a thing brings us back to the old question of the purpose of striking

the

art.

feeling

is

his

And

it

suggests the query whether, if

be constantly refined to an ever more

delicate shade, the final result will be as clear as

the verbal thought. that the

Only we must never

mere outward

of the word-title,

is

forget

significance, the guessing

of no value

in itself.

After the climax of the classic masters, there

seems to have been a tendency towards exploring the limits of the power of music to specialize a " meaning." Direct utterance of simple feeling yielded to this dazzling experiment. is

Berlioz

probably the most typical representative of

this

tendency; yet

own

how

simple seems the refu-

which he would intersperse through the pages. Opera was given a new impulse. It is most grateful to find in

tation of his

labels

251

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Schumann

just the

perception of this

right

power of music and how his nature and his

it

;

is

interesting to see

training led to the dis-

tinguishing quality of his poetry.

Schumann and Mendelssohn were of the masters born and bred

their

to

;

own

whom

right

And

a

more

by a

of

So Schumann was more so, indeed, than

and need. his

reflective

direction

service

education and culture were

early steeped in poetry in music.

first

in a social class

whose main function was not the another

the

;

mind, thus inclined towards

was confirmed however irregular,

art,

course,

prudence.

The

abandon.

In music

taste for its

meditation

effect

was

is

in

this

in juris-

hard to

to lead

men

to prefer to explore hidden recesses of thought

and of

special sentiment, national, legendary,

or local, rather than to utter naive bursts of untitled feeling.

It

is

not until our day, of

Brahms in particular, that we have returned to the more natural attitude. Schumann was the first master who had the distinction not to be an infant phenomenon.

The most wonderful

musical feat told of his

youth was a mimicry of

and

it

is

friends at the piano

characteristic, too, 252

of

his later genius.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There was here an early temptation to

The

ideas into music.

ence were

came

literary

;

it

translate

boy's channels of influ-

was thus that impressions

Music was not his first native which he lived, breathed, listened,

to him.

element

in

and spoke unconsciously.

He received

and gave out

It

tones.

in

in verse

seems that

this

habit found a strong introspective quality in his nature to build It

cannot be

upon.

To

sympathetic intuition. feeling for logical life. is

to

difficult

To abandon

thought

see

educated

is

this leaning

men

the

almost the stay of

here that religion so often

ago

aims by

like selling the soul.

it is

most honest minds.

his

fails

It

to hold the

But a generation

or

two

on the saving grace of reason

was stronger far than to-day. The further we go from the mediaeval sway of deductive philosophers, the less faith

we have

in the final

power of mere reasoned knowledge to win salvation.

Modern

achievements and in

changed

us.

agnostic, and

science, its

We have

equally

in

its

disappointments, has

certainly

we have been

led

become more

beyond the

true

by riotous fads and follies in all the arts, by abandonment of ethical and artistic ideals.

line

253

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

We have gone far astray,

forgetting that, while

deductive reasoning can never give original or

of

final truth

to arrive from one truth to

the virtue

only sure

yet, the

itself, it is,

successor.

its

way

Indeed,

not in the logic of words, but

lies

goes back to the saving principle of true sequence. It is this

word, more perhaps than any other,

which tells the supreme achievement of Schumann. He felt unconsciously bound to add to the honor of his art in thus increasing her power of clear utterance. charge

who

we

It is

now

proud of

music means nothing, senses.

test

its

is

therefore a

Every musician,

book. all

own perfect

of the truth of

—more its

common

their ignorance, that

clear

far

It is in lines,

sequence

its

mere matter

until

he sees

But the

the truth, must feel the sting. that in

the

hear brought against music by those

are rather

of the

even

lies

fact

is

the clearest

thought and utterance,

than the

test

of logic text-

the perfect mastery of the art in

of melodic phrase, of combined

agreement of several

strains,

of the rounding

out of the whole, in the verification of perfect

beauty of the complete

the security for real truth.

art

For

work, that this

lies

mastery of

the language gives the power of uttering honest 254

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING feeling; indeed, the connection

the

mastery

itself

double, for

based originally on the

is

fundamental honesty of It is

is

artistic

purpose.

the inner perfection of workmanships

not the outer evidence of signs and

labels, that

bears witness to the truth of the tonal art.

Schumann can be of ways for

this

all

kinds

hidden power of music.

One

seen striving in

was a curious device of themes from the musical letters of names of special significance. For instance, almost all the scenes

of the " Carnival"

on notes which represent the musical letters of his own name, S c h a. They happened to be the same as those of the town Asch, which at one time had a romantic meaning for Schumann. Thus, by the German nomenclature, Asch would be A, Es (Efe), C, are based

H(B): *-

f A

splendid example of this sort of musical

punning

on the name seems a mere unimpor-

are the inspiring fugues

Sometimes tant amusement Bach.

;

this

at

others

it

doubted sense of symbolism. 255

betrays an un-

Another view,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING which at once answers two separate needs of Schumann's nature, is that, however unimportant the themes are in themselves, the stress

is

laid

on their treatment. In other words, no matter what your theme, you can talk about it musi-

Thus we can

cally.

others

music.

in

course, that there

of

own beauty

its

here too

little

importance

allowed to the theme.

more genius and power of

the

all

must be admitted, of

It is

about Bach and

talk

thought

is

Yet

sequential

required in this discussion.

And

element of discussion, extended greatly

this

even beyond Beethoven, explored vast the power of music for cance.

It is best to

more

regard

all

fields in

definite signifithis writing as

experimental in the possibilities of themal de-

velopment.

Of much

higher dignity are those

of musical characterization

poems

like the Children's

Scenes and the Forest Scenes, where he conjures

up

in simplest

touches the quintessence,

not of the outward situation or event, but of the

The

peculiar

who

superficial critic,

says, " tells

which enshrouds them.

feeling

Of what

speaks too quickly,

use are the

the story?"

He

titles, if

the music

cannot forget that the

256

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING mere conjecture of the particular poet's

mind

and of nothing

picture of this

feeling here uttered

with this situation,

may

The

also reside.

in the Pastoral at

first

feeling is

not a

There

else.

is

a

is all

we

care for.

Beethoven's experience

Symphony.

It

is

well

known

he directed the reader to find the

situations for himself.

gave

is

which is certainly associated in however many others it

Rather pertinent here

how

The music

of no gain.

is

in the

title

precise

labels

But on completion, he everywhere, and added,

" Rather an expression of feeling than a pic-

The

ture."

poet

enjoyment by

is

bound

telling us all

a guessing match.

to help us to this

he knows

set

title

after

not is

he always

He

never

out deliberately to translate a certain sub-

was undoubtedly mood and with this equipment that

this

Schumann wrote of

that

composition.

ject into tonal language. in

it is

In agreement with this

Schumann's own admission wrote the

;

their

his songs,

It

which, independent

wealth of beauty and depth of senti-

ment, came to the world as absolutely

new

con-

ceptions of the power of music to mirror the particular emotional significance of the words.

But 17

these

are relatively the less 2 S7

important

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING elements of Schumann's

them thus

categorically

rable totality with

art,

though to discuss

to ignore the insepa-

is

which they express

his genius.

So when we have spoken of his sense of sequence

we have

in music,

some of the

into account

of

his

placed the great

So

we

take

strongest influences

In the fore of these must be

youth.

Richter.

said but little unless

German

prose-poet, Jean Paul

and overwhelming was

direct

his

power over Schumann's thought, that one might almost say, Who does not know Jean Paul, does not

know Schumann. Undoubtedly,

reading the former throws the brightest light

upon

the intent of the

In Jean Paul

pure

we

latter.

feel

sentiment, the

the sole prominence of

ruthless,

almost

subordination of everything material

;

cynical the ex-

travagant contempt of facts, of objective personalities,

unalloyed

of events, of

Then we remember of humor and pathos,

feeling.

sudden succession

part of this plan of revolt

concrete externals

with

all

this

;

of

plot, in riotous revel

the all

from the tyranny of

and, too,

we know

whim of sudden change

that

there

is

not only no lack of connection, on the contrary, there is in the

very contrast of emotions 258

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and

in the

ward fibre It

freedom from

hostile realities

sense, the closest continuity,

of out-

one unbroken

of emotional experience. seems as

if

Schumann was almost con-

scious of his mission as the Jean Paul of music.

The

nature of his art

left

him

free

from the

intrusion of the world of concrete sense.

This

influence of Jean Paul's strikingly reinforced

Schumann's other tendency towards musical meaning and sequence. It gave him a peculiar

power of consecutive musical thought, a sense of development quite beyond that of Beethoven, although in his path. The theme being relegated to

mere

text, all vital

stress

was

laid

on the

following out of the emotional thread wherever it

may

Wedded

lead.

intensity of

emotion

abandon

(utterly

which

world),

to this

power was an

to an absolute subjective

reckless

of a conventional

most indubitably the beyond even the faintest

bears

stamp of sincerity

suspicion of conscious attempt to please. lost

gives

in

Thus

the concentration of his emotion, he

its

essence, turning

music away from

its

supposed vocation of mere beauty to the most powerful utterance of high feeling, becoming

almost definite by this very intensity. 259

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The most

direct

examples

here

Novelettes, which are not only greatest

Schumann's works, but of the piano

By

literature.

this

the

are

greatest

among of

all

wonderful threading

of the theme, and by these magic contrasts of feeling, there

is

the clearest sequence of narrative,

you can almost read off the story. At any rate you have the same essential gain, all but the dry, dead weight of facts and names. For the very pleasure of reading a story, I should turn as eagerly to Schumann's NovelAnd then it is ettes as to any prose-writing. so that



always equally

unimportant

fresh,

details.

with ever It is

new changes of

not at

tempest of on-rushing drive

in

all

the mere

one theme

;

the

always some sudden exquisite phase of

best

is

new

tender feeling, that

the closest continuity.

by

its

There

contrast is

probably no

work in all the literature of music named as Schumann's Novelettes.

The only

shows

so aptly

other influence to be compared

with that of Jean Paul's was one within the

domain of

his

can be traced less

own in

art.

To

be sure, there

Schumann's works more

or

pervading traces of several musical person-

alities.

Schubert

is

very distinct in the intimate 260

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING touches, the naivete of melodic flow, the sur-

of modulation.

prises

But

seems that one

it

other master affected not merely Schumann's style, but,

thought.

mode of musical And with him we come to what bids more deeply,

his

fair to

be a perennial mystery in musical

ture.

The posthumous

fluence

is

power;

it

in art

seems that

and

final

of the good, by

must appeal to

dramatic pathos. it

of Bach's

in-

not only striking as a type of the

triumph

final

career

litera-

all

To

us,

its

inherent

alone from

its

our modern democracy,

salvation for the artist, all true

judgment must ultimately

lie

with

that awful tribunal, the people, quite without

regard

to

its

capacity, not

of judging, but

merely of understanding. Thus a critic in a recent book * actually advises the musician to

bow

to the

triumph of the composer

who

has

conquered " his quarter of the globe," swallowing

all

convictions of right.

Thus

it

does

seem that the greatest danger to music comes from its friends, who yield a certain sacred trust.

With them itself,

the old ideal of truth, of right in

has absolutely ceased to inhabit the uni-

* Apthorp's " Musicians and Music-Lovers." 261

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The only

verse.

can be a mad, vulgar

result

scramble for the nod of the mob.

Bach

When

stands as the eternal denial of

this.

all

the rest of the world was revelling in

new

the delights of the

toy, opera,

which

all

but upset the grave beauty of church music,

which drove out the ideal of high sensuous melody the sole usurper, quietly wrote his

German

music, and other spirit

of the high

within the limits of a

and

this

of

strict

German

left

master

organ

oratorios, his

instrumental art

art,

forms in the discipline, all

province, harassed

by the worries of an ill-paid organist. The true value of Bach is still enigmatic. His is, strangely, a rising influence, which cannot even

now be justly

no doubt he

is

gauged.

There seems to be

that in his peculiar mastery of the art

not only highest of

all,

but he

is

almost

power of his equipment. But, to return to the man, to show the absolute isolation of the artist from the applaud-

incredible in the achieved

ing crowd, he wrote on to a

modest

rut

of outer

life,

good old age

in his

with a family of twenty

main nucleus of his following, and then died and was forgotten. Let the modern world of sudden furore, of mad children forming probably the

262

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING how long was

popular judgment, think

of

Just one hundred years after the

his spirit.

first

the sleep

performance of his great work, " The Pas-

Matthew,"

sion according to St.

and brought to

light

And

delssohn.

was unearthed sound by Men-

it

and living

power has only over the minds of

ever since, Bach's

been steadily waxing,



musicians and masters, never with the people directly,

of

—growing absolutely by the

inherent truth and nobility.

its

down, though popular.

And

so,

be

who

of highest It

it

It is

can never, in

is

preserved the

is

cannot

nature, be

art in the

the force of truth

work of

this giant

time of

its

greatest peril.

this

influence

priesthood.

We

some high truth of Egyptian can see some reason for this.

The forms of Bach's

writing are, save one, not

adapted to popular hearing on any great

torios,

by

in

of

destined to be borne indirectly through

other masters, like

Even

art.

single-handed upheld the traditions

seems inevitable that

Bach's

its

It

almost like a decalogue in

fate, or, better,

it

direct, there

hero,

sole force

Germany,

sung

in

the people.

it

is

probably only his ora-

church, that are

And

it

known

seems that there

limitation here in Bach's genius 263

scale.

itself,

directly is

some

although

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING almost profane to attempt individual judg-

it is

But by the nature of the spirit of religious mystery and man's self-effaced devotion that Bach uttered, he was driven rather to an altitude ment.

of deep, high meditation than of expression.

So

seems

less

And

therefore

needed a mediator for his

his

who

of separate works

important than the quality of his

musical thought.

master

almost paradoxi-

in his writings,

cally, the actual total effect

free individual

Bach has

ever

a

new

final assertion

profound vein of

will reconcile the

thought with modern ideas of

But the that,

horizon of

;

say,

is

seems in

an

increase.

The paradox of Bach's ing one

others

all

power of Bach seems

limited, the latent

unending

art forms.

we might

great compensation,

while the

;

but

its

art is a

final pursuit

most tempt-

does not belong

We

remember how, in the first emergence of music from the school-days in the cloister, there was a period of utter abandon here.

from meditation to exuberant feeling.

revel

Bach's art came before

of individual

all this.

Later,

the crowning masters of the secular epoch sought

a return to the profundity of the early cloister days.

But even

in

Beethoven 264

this

was never

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There

quite attained.

ence between musicians

of Bach.

call

is

always a great

the analytic

meditation

differ-

(what

counterpoint) of Beethoven and

There

is

lacking a certain psycho-

logical, introspective quality.

After

all,

with

all

the later complexity of Beethoven, his whole art It

is

a different basis

originally

is

only

on

later did

it

from that of Bach.

monomelodic turn towards polyphony. Bach secular,

was meditative to the

lyric,

core.

While Mendelssohn brought Bach's works to the surface, Schumann was the great master who absorbed his spirit and thought. Almost a man, Schumann turned to Bach as the highest artistic oracle.

on each master.

light

and Schumann. tive

This influence throws a double It

In both

makes Bach is

clearer

the strong, reflec-

hue of thought, and the polyphonic mode

of expression.

seem almost to

In Schumann's see

symphony we

how Bach would have gone

Bach is the Religious Meditator, Schumann is the Romantic

about

it.

It

Psychologist. this

might be

said that as

Just one example, out of

mass of theoretic speculation,

give proof and throw light. touch, but I believe

it is

265

It

typical.

will at is

all

once

a lightest

In one of the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Forest Scenes, " Lonely Flowers," the whole picture

the

is

Throughout

graceful themes.

a note that

is

Bach

two

there

is

slight

hardly

not of individual voice, that

men

not what the wise the pure

intertwining of

literal

polyphonic.

call

art applied,

is

It is

almost idealized,

in

secular poetry. It

is

not

how

difficult to see

this influence

Schumann, of introwas sometimes morbid. But

reinforced a native trait of

spection

again

that

we must

see

how

it

affected merely the

process of thought, not the outward shape of

Mendelssohn followed Bach

work.

art

external outline.

Schumann. sonata.

It

He

could not be expected of

wrote no oratorio, no organ

And we

are thus

brought to the

and the paramount view of Schumann's

Too much

in the

stress

cannot be

laid

final

art.

upon the

of form as an abstract conception, as an element of art, like melody or

entire difference

and forms as mere conventional examples of the other. No ideas are so relent-

harmony,

lessly confused.

The commonest answer

to the

charge that a musician lacks the power of form is

to decry traditional types like the sonata or

the

symphony.

You

might 266

as well confine the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING idea of dress to the pantaloons.

forgotten

form

that

is

It

utterly

is

a quality of creative

thought, not a prescribed law.

Musicians other-

wise of the soundest will constantly

students

tell

that the recipe of composition consists simply

of the

in the filling

classic

moulds with

original

themes,

—nothing more.

form

absent exactly as this prescriptive form

is

is

The

present.

live

on only

for their

are

sonata and the

fact

is

that true

symphony can

as long as poets feel their exigence

thought

obeyed

The

as

;

they will die as soon as they

mere authority.

Schumann in the respect of form has been much misunderstood. It was in the nature of the poetry of his time to forsake temporarily (for

its

own

classics.

day

is

sake)

In the

the great

German

models of the

prose literature of the

seen the chaotic impulse, delighting in

disorder, in

overthrowing the old, in chasing

madly

some

after

in all the loose

butterfly sentiment,

and

mass of disconnected episodes,

having a very decided continuous thread. the thread is

is

yet,

Only

not external, of story or plot

;

it

a unity of feeling in one subjective personality

through contrasting

situations.

This sort of

book was the prototype of Schumann's Humor* 267

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING eske

and

where apparently

Kreisleriana,

abandoned

one piece hardly ends

of form

is

when an

utterly irrelevant

highest delight

is

;

to find the subtle connection

independence of

reason of

it,

But our

one begins.

And

which pervades the whole. his

earlier

thus, with all

models, perhaps

Schumann seems

very power of weaving subtly

by

strongest in this initial

themes to

which crowns the work with justification and true ultimate meaning.

a climax

As

idea

all

its

own

must seem at first thought that all these elements and early influences promise little. The art and thought of Bach were remote, and equally the chaotic method of dominant literature. It must be seen, too, that the universal tendency of all musical thought in the nineteenth to

century

Schumann's symphonies,

was

In

special.

colossal climax.

it

Beethoven was the

came the national Berlioz went far beyond

In Schubert

reaction and assertion.

the true limits of graphic depiction.

cannot escape his Teutonic

flavor.

sohn seemed to find most inspiration romance,



at

any

rate

in

the

Wagner Mendelsin local

suggestion

of

special subjects.

Schumann seems

to us the greatest poet of 268

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING time

the

And

spirit.

was representative of

he

but

;

so there

in

is

its

him, too, as com-

pared with the classic height, a descent into

narrower

of

lines

domination of

He

feeling.

ideals

under the

is

and thought of contem-

German poetry, pervaded with the spirit of German legend. Under all these poets of the century, one theme has become predominant porary

beyond

its

due, has

had too much conscious

Schumann's treatment,

stress.

been of the highest in tone,

Wagner's. too

full

to the

But



to be sure, has

is

too narrow,

is

no approach

in all, the field

of special subjects

;

higher than

far

there

noble height of Beethoven's cosmic,

universal thought.

The symphony, of utterance

in

music,

the widest scope. a very strict

as the highest is

Indeed,

known mode

always greatest with it

might be

humor, that the

true

said, in

symphony

can have no limitation whatever of special subject,

whether expressed or implied.

thus dangerously near

a

We

are

prejudiced view of

Schumann's symphonies. It is better to take our usual course, forming our opinion in the very reading of the work. 269

IX SCHUMANN With

no master

is

(Continued)

more urgent

it

approach with absolute honesty,

judgment, above

all

free

hope, but

we must

Romantic

period.

fear for

The second symphony

We are not

association. tion.

It

we

from pre-

from the presumption that

We

may

symphonies

in a

symphonies are masterpieces.

his

that

has no

title

inclined in

or even

any

direc-

begins not unlike the characteristic

prelude of Beethoven and Schubert, which

we

With them it was a mystic Now, Schumann is of all poets in verse

have often noticed. vein.

or tone

He

most

lost in his peculiar subjectivity.

does not paint objects (though he will give

with subtle power the true sentiment suggested in

outward

situations),

philosophical.

It

and he

would be a

is

not at

all

great gain to dis-

cern this distinction between the element of

mystic philosophy versal

scope, and

in

music with a certain uni-

what might be 270

called the

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING meditative, the psychological, the purely introspective.

Bach was

He

Bach and Schumann were the tied fast to the

latter.

moorings of his creed.

could not roam and grope freely for the

Schumann's temper was for romantic meditation, but his feeling was intensely and passionately special. For him the wealth of emotion in the individual man was lowest foundations.

too great to stray into the bleaker regions of

And

general impersonal speculation.

mann was

yet Schu-

neither materialist nor sentimentalist.

He might, by some,

be called a link between

the high, impersonal tone of his great predecessors

and the sentimentalism of

later materialism.

But

that

is

his

only because he

himself held the true balance. right

mean

;

day and the

He

had the

he did not run into riotous,

sponsible hedonism.

irre-

In the vehemence of his

sentiment he held to the lode-star of highest ethical

ideals.

poets, the highest

He

German conception of woman. With reached, of

all

the passionate intensity of his feeling, he had the leaven of idealism, a sense of responsibility

and of profundity.

vigorous middle age,

If he it

had

lived into a

seems that he would

probably have matured into the highest poetic 271

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Unfortunately, the very intensity of

quality.

his early romanticism, his

vidual emotion,

made

absorption in indi-

irreparable

havoc on

his

mental powers. In his symphonies

we have

glimpses, and

more, of the height to which he was tending.

Ever deeper

his

sympathies were growing, ever

no loss of intensity of feeling. Yet his symphonies seem to remain still in the field of special and individual they are not what we have so often interest praised in Beethoven and sometimes in others wider his horizon

and there

;

is

;

they are not cosmic. third

symphony

of the Rhine.

is,

It is

in truth

We

not simply that the

and

in title, a

are thinking of the

poem music

itself.

Here, in the second symphony, begins the legendary tone in the horns, with quiet, primeSostenuto assai.

Brass (with

obligate Violins).

m

wm^F3$z& 272

**

r

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

val simplicity, while the violins add an

panying serene meditation. Teutonic.

It

the Beethoven

C

has

not

the

distinctly

is

universality

of

even of Schubert's

or

Fifth,

It

accom-

Major.

The

Gradually others join. in a

more human, a more personal

leads somewhere.

Yet,

all

sings quite naturally

-i

* =* T—w-f—i=z}

J-

—i— — i

Woodwind.

d

*

-u t m:

*N 18

and naively

1

p

It

verses the

its

-<5»-

I 3 7

vein.

through, the deep-

Between

toned legend resounds.

wind

discussion grows

273

1

-i



-t—

-w-

r

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

±± # :

K

I i

^

^=

J-



*s

-(S>#-

-l«

il ll

|

£=£ -I

But fall

as

(2-

h-

soon as the horns return, the strings

Now

again into their revery.

with gentle,

not sudden awakening, the strings striking into

x

x

i

*-3

n^n fp

/ Trem.

t

espressivo.

*

*

X

X

274

*

p_TT^

i

:

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING hum,

a quivering

a

new

strain is

heard from

discoursing woodwind, with a kind of heavily

springing gait, after the musing walk of the Sostenuto.

The

answer

light

grows brighter, more

and vehement, but disappears when the legend of the horns returns. But the other phrase, equally eccentric though more

through

a

insistent

serious, follows

full

along

and broad

conclusion

and

a free, rhetorical flourish of violins, into the

where the text

Allegro,

theme

now

that before piped

sings

power

a

its

the

little

answering

timid attempts and

steady chant of joy, with that

for endless

we have

is

sequence and flow, which

seen lurking in

themes 275

Schumann and

in his

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Allegro

ma non

troppo.

Strings (doubled

in unison

and upper octave by Wood).

# Eventually a climax

is

reached in this jolly,

skipping song, with some change of locality

and now,

for the rest

ment of melodic with

much

on a theme

subjects, there

regularity

that

of the preliminary

its

not too high pitched, that

is

motion

a quiet talk,

of question and answer,

contrasts pleasantly with the

glide of

is

state-

:

276

first

in the

even

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Doubled above and below.

y. Wood

(reinforced

by tremolo

strings).

'

5TT

«

f-T Bat

*Jfc

.

-

-*-

n£ Doubled below.

JhJJJ

«

ft n

**-*-

*6fc '-*—

^

*

=i

fflc

rffrjj

—tc

W; All this chatting

seems really best of



is

wound up by (what

all)

a broad, authoritative

page 278), echoing basses.

(see

presently confirmed below in final verse

t=

--^

conclusion, in simple terms

A

:;_

of the theme closes the statement.

Schumann.

But

instead of the dramatic, boisterous fray of

many

Discussion

natural

is

to

voices righting out their conclusion of peace

and concord,

it is

nal reflection.

a meditation, a curious inter-

The melodic 277

voices seem like

r

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Woodwind and

Strings.

»

*

** 35:

£ cres

sfp

IF

-

-

i4ii i-h£?-i

««

?

f

Rhythmic figure doubled

T

ib/?

t^SSk-k-t-k-

-#-=H



% i

§f

*t=t»

&E

in octaves.

I

impersonal shades rather than the living figures

which laugh and

talk in

the earlier masters.

But it is less easily perceived as a graphic symbolism of mundane, every-day persons and doings. It is more a dreamy haze of imaginings, which has its artistic place and need as much as any other Poetical

mood

;

it

but

is

it

in the highest degree.

is

perhaps better adapted to the 278

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING handling of a single instrument than to

solitary

the orchestral world of sounds.

Here

united

the

of three

descent

make

strings

steps,

while

above

repeated in

the

woodwind the first Allegro is still keeping us in good cheer with a little answering phrase of violins Woodwind.

^Hm

3 Mnn

^.j*

m

«=M

Ms/P

X

^T^

IX

X2-

M

~A^*

Now tinues.

the

A

maze of

m r

Strings (doubled below.)

¥ i

these three phrases con«

duet in the violins 279

is

see-sawing

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

^

r

a 4

-i

-«L

J.

4.

v. *==l

^EIS i-r cresc.

JTTTTl 4 4 V

/

while the flutes are

still

ever

descending

depths, and

new

-J-

piping at the skipping

by

song, and the brass, aided are

J.

into

fagots and oboes,

lower

and

subterranean scenes.

lower

When

the violins cross each other's path, there

is

a

strange pinch, a narrow escape from quarrel,

which keeps us in pleasantly increasing susSoon the second Allegro theme is the pense. bone of contention between mixed parties of

wood and soothed a

strings. little

Still,

the anxious suspense,

by a new thought Wood.

» P

espressivo.

280

i

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING echoed above

each utterance, then advancing

at

again with assenting voices Woodwind. -.0. |

i

r-

4 ;

i

E

r

r

and now through a

strain

of

clearer serenity

i-id—. n

S ^

^i

I

and

to higher

•'-^

still

-4-

m

*

#Z0#0 espressivo

more

delicate refrains

3

i r— «s

of the

anxious phrase J-

g

pf

ro;

wandering on through echoing

of the old maze of descending

rupted

by

basses

and answering

this

strains

stretches, inter-

strings.

Always

there

is

balance between joy and pain, this dulcet

anxiety

;

throughout, of course, the joyful dance

melody grows firmer, more of the

first

is

absent.

Now

the

mood

confident, gradually lifting 281

a

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING out of the depths

then, with

;

more nervous

more and more impetuously, a new

step, rising

energy in the answering phrase of the strings

(which has been hitherto vaguely wandering

in

and out) Strings (sustained

4V— =1-

in unison

and above by Wind).

^&$=4

-#-=d-s-

it=ai

/

r

-

F=FL

i

=1

ft

i

W-J*

*

£^

».

"N

r

j—x-r-s—s— iE*

-w

%«-» -*-

f-

"N

And

so,

reach at

soaring

last

the

into gladder

swing of the

heights, first

we

Allegro

melody, but merely the dancing movement. It is

again the trio of voices which began the

discussion,

and the sky

minor clouds.

When we 282

is

still

o'ercast with

thought we were out

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of the wilds, back we must go to the dim, sweetly-sad

uncertainty, until

we

despair of

reaching the old pleasant places before dark. In gliding strings, while the lightly piping along,

is

woodwind above

is

that earlier strain of

anxious soothing.

But

at the

end of the climax,

after a

few

we are at last gambolling again our sunny meadows to the tune of the old

departing wails, in

dancing song.

It is all as at first,

only noisier

But when the melodies have been sung again, and the strings descend as in the beginning of the discussion, the wood, and more

spirited.

instead of replying with the skipping phrase,

answer with equally steady, gliding sweep, in contained serenity Wood.

And

so through one

more

283

descent,

when

the

#

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING ascent begins con fuoco with nervous energy of

phrase Strings (reinforced by Woodwind).

Con fuoco. */„

ffij... te=i g=gfef s/*

f

Strings.

fc

^_#_ F

/

i

1

~N Doubled below.

F

sf

r

w 'I

I

knm

y=f 5/

S t±

1

f

*— a—»-

*/

and with extended rehearsing of other phrases and cadences, sistence

all

earlier

dominated by the

in-

of the principal melody, with springing

gait.

Scherzo.

We

are not pretending to set forth a plan.

we have not discovered it. We presearch for it in company with the reader.

Frankly, fer to

284

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Special

connection with

apparent,

By

— mere

itself,

it

is

the Scherzo

is

not

sympathy of mood. one of the most deliciously general

melodious, magically rhythmical bits of music.

symphony,

charm is almost irrelevant, is far behind germane pertinence. The theme is a type of one of Schumann's diverse humors, utterly opposite to his more common sombre sternness. And it has the But

in the

separate



quality,

rare

in

extended subjects, of great

versatility for discussion.

The melody, seem-

Allegro vivace.

Strings (the chords doubled

in lower

33

Woodwind).

ftsu-3&J-M-*

:

IB»-

r ±

»-4w*

i 285

5*

.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING x.

-i

/ b3T1

^s

-©>-

3*5

$a

*^£

P*S

!*r cresc.

V

*£L. 452-

#w-

:fe

e

$

r

without thought of a necessary end,

ingly

bounds along through scene little later

the wood,

make gay

along,

after

scene.

A

which have been chattering

retort to the first phrase

of

violins

x.

Wood.

p Strings, -M±

$

iP^fe -

**r

r

^M•tj#b

fe=

,

SBEES

bi.bi

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

dialogue continues in varying pitch.

comes a most delicate bit of hide and seek, between strings and

the midst of play,

In

at

it

Wood. Strings

Then both go

wind.

to the original dance,

tripping together back

whence

is

repeated.

melody has an almost the swoop of wind.

Here the swing of the increased vigor,

all

first

After a friendly touch at the close, the

Trio

is

first

contrasted in a confidential, informal,

intimate way, peculiarly Schumann's, breaking Trio

7)

I.

•••"»?"

Woodwind and Horns, i

SB "*N

i

i

£

-#-

doubled above. s -*I

*1

£

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

formal rhythm. reflective

Though

quietly playful,

is

compared with the bubbling Scherzo.

All in graceful swing, the their

it

song laughingly

sing

the strings answer

more

continue frivolous

;

;

The wood

seriously.

woodwind

the

now discourse freely without much attento the mischievous wood, humming away

strings

tion

without constraint of period, as

if to

themselves,

lengthening out the phrases at sweet

reiterating,

will into a sincere, friendly conclusion,

into is

broken

by the impish woodwind, when the melody

repeated.

And now

infected with the fun

down

to a sober

Higher

r

;

the strings are quickly

the

wood

actually settle

song

octaves.

Lfftirf tj"

Woowind and

Brass.

r

^£crf

Bass doubled below.

288

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Then,

after returning to the earlier Trio,

they

gradually are drawn again into the whirl of the

Scherzo. But the Trio was evidently not enough

of a brown study.

—must

recoil

from

for a

good hour by

hilarity,

Schumann must have

his

retreat into his shell

In the second

himself.

Trio, after the merriment of the Scherzo has

faded away,

we

settle into a

quiet current of bitter-sweet dream-

ing.

There

tune,

but a

is

leave dancing

and shouting and

no glad rhythm, no sparkling charged

continuous song,

with

mingled longing and content Trio

II.

Strings.

Bass 8va lower

The

revery deepens

when

melody subtly

the

steals in in the basses, before the

finished,

and similarly the

the latter end.

break in before

Soon the dreamy

with manifold play of 19

flutes

initial

289

oboes have

plot thickens,

phrases.

Later

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the

song returns with complete swing.

full

Then,

after repeated timid attempts, the jolly

Scherzo

steals in

and soon spreads

cheer

its

all

about, ending in a romp.

The Adagio symphony.

the real lyric point of the

is

Like the Scherzo,

in its

way

an inspiration of the highest beauty.

it

is

And

with the Scherzo the relation of contrast en-

hances stern

meaning.

its

standard

If

we have

it

set,

were not for the

we could

rejoice

with glad assurance in one of the greatest of

But we cannot lose sight of the one highest requisite, the dominance of one feeling throughout and by this standard we must measure. all

symphonies.



;

It is

not simply

in the majestic, simple grace

and fervid pathos of the melody, Adagio

espressivo.

Vfl

prt2 3w:ku4-

s

Cantabile.

W* n*n ^?-T

EHH

i

it

is

quite as

n^_ n

i 290

3*^3

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

£

£ fc T He

:g»:

q it

i

Frt H

LJjTq

£?

*

=g*

q

Se£

:ttP

ISt

r^fj

a-fr

much

the ingenuous

voice ever

slips in

-fr

-*-

a-^

charm with which a new

with the subject, before

we

ceremony of introduction, like members of a family group stealing in around the hearth one by one and before you know it, all are gathered, cosily talking. At the end of a verse of the great melody, the wood and horns have a simple introduction with the strings in a discussion on

are prepared, without

any

fuss or



;

a phrase that seems insignificant, but breaks out into a

most moving cadence 291

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings (with occasional Woodwind).

Then on rung

an

the

first

two

at ever higher pitch

plaint

insistent

ing at

by

the violins, rises

of speaking beauty, end-

last serenely in

tentment.

bars of the melody,

Now creeps

a (major) key of conin

pure meditation,

who

must have her moment. Even from pathetic utterance Schumann must retire to chew the cud of quiet reflection. The visible cud is a fugal theme discussed by monkish strings in strict impersonal solemnity, from the gloomy

maze of which the expressive woodwind relieves us by unceremoniously entering with Again the discussion of and again the insistent plaint

the

main melody.

the

strings

;

;

the end, in profound musing, with the lowest strings

humming

bits

of the tune again and

again. 292

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

We

come

must be the

Here,

justification.

Let us pursue our

We

quietly expectant way. a

if

have had, so

introduced

Allegro,

spirited

anywhere,

to the Finale.

far,

truly naive

in

musing, broken ever by legend-toned horns sparkling Scherzo, with periodic

reserve

beauty.

Here

strum and

;

is

and at

sounds with

all

Adagio of

an

brass, all in Allegro molto vivace

I 5

±iE=?

(save

drums and low :

Drums and Trombones).

l=±=la ^ f3 # «'



3^5

the main

in a subordinate key,

the band but

Whole Orchestra

rarest

mere signalling

a

first

melody, queerly starting

3

a

1

zt -GT2

3

35

:

/ &

"N

V.

I y

%

g

p>

j i

-#-. C.

-•s 23"

I

-•I

2

-f

-

I

-•-• I

-#1

-!«-=-#-

*E

:

P=F^ f=rf £i

g#-»_-#-<$>-

-J2-

f^rf 293

a

shy retreating and

its

Then what seems

blast.

;

£

:g:

^

a

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING &

and

so,

:$•

:$

long in continuous,

bandying about one phrase

more extended

J

-#-•-#-

-f2-

melody,

spirited

:

:

-m.

-I

-*— r

—J=4

s

r

r.

r

^rj'

and breaking out again ever adding

in simple, hearty chorus,

some new touch of quaint variation

All but Trombones, with higher

f-iflj-d

J-

gp



*-=H

f

f^ 294

octaves.


r^

l

«-f

4

s I

-5"

-fig

£-

<+-

V

:

^=*^

-^-

-»-

ztzzl'-zztz:

t

t r

r

r

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Then comes pedantic for

what seems almost As violas and so glad a song.

in the strings

fagots trip leisurely along, the violins simply

course up and

down

the scale, with

no

special

J

significance,

continuing

in

mild playfulness.

Soon horns and other wind join. Now is the meaning clear. Through the network of running strings and coursing woodwind sings from the depth of cellos and fagots, reinforced by violins and clarionets, the stately melody of the Oboes and Horns below. 3.

Violas, Clarionets, Cellos,

295

and Fagots.

—rr

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Adagio, with serener majesty, and a

making a

sadness, in long notes,

little less

basic

of

theme

for the whole.

All serve.

is

on a great

Once

scale

and with a

the legend has sounded,

not forthwith sound again, but strings

chatter

absence. utterance.

certain re-

But

away

more

the voluble

lightly for

always gathering for a

it is

And

the

lets

does

it

so

returns,

it

higher scenic region

it

;

sings

enounced

its

new in a

more frequently

Responsive play of mixed groups of Woodwind and Strings. Doubled in octaves above and below.

jr


^r

[email protected]

--__i-

&

z^sz=tfe

—-—

-*-)

£2-

/

j e

K2.

'Q?-

Doubled below.

^=^

—0—f#

—r—r-i— — #

pzz^nf^zqizzp:

1

HORNS.

V:

~=#«%

-£Z-

-&

g:

^=r=M f— J^ifz

t=t 296

m-

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Now

all

started

are

singing

fragments in a

great medley.

The pathos majesty.

is all

gone, but not the depth or

Finally, as half the instruments are

coursing furiously, the others sing the conclusive phrase with true assured finality Strings doubled above in Woodwind.

I

Strings doubled below.

Thence back

to the

first

all

with formal exactness.

of

this

melody, but not

For

at

after the refrain

theme comes the unmistakable psycho-

Harmony

in the

Woodwind. ka.-

i s

-&7*

-<2. -<2.

%&\*f

Strings.

*=£

lS*=

^N Doubled above and below.

297

0?

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING -&L£2-

moment which stamps Schumann. sentiment aside, we must down for a good

All

logical

hard

think on the phrase of the original strum of the

movement.

The

collision

jostling by,

—ALneas

of the running

forces,

shows the argumentative

multa diu j act am animo.

altercating contradictions

roughly

reflection,

The

undeniable.

is

jar

of

We

can see the parties getting into technicalities.

Out of

it

suddenly

is

a

more

Strings and Clarionets.

Rhythmical Horns and Fagots.

placid, but

Flutes

more

in octave above.

marcato.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

J

si

-s>

igfc==Jte fe^-

-

F r

r

r

r

r

r.

T

absorbed revery

musing

;

no

F eyes turned inward

;

F

&

-&r

%&-

F

r

resultant feeling as yet

;

;

a rapt

still

wan-

dering and wondering.

The strumming

run, too, adds

course, though, to differing before,

now

be

in

=13

%9-

* • p

other voices,

Woodwind).

*f

J[Z5T

opposing

unite against the intruder

Strings (doubled above

X,

sure, the

its

-&

18—33*0-0-0—0-

17

r

* rr rrr

^^^ £ -!$>-

1 f £gd

Low

And

strings doubled below.

presently

we

are in the very valley of the

shadow of darkest groping, 299

— ominous

;



r

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings and Clarionets.

¥

m4

£

=$

&-

z*

*<

3-

*r

*X'

* r r Horns and Fagots.

*i

r

?r

-<$>-

-\ Strings doubled below.

Flutes and Oboes added above. «/,

4

^

d^ p

for

r

m

t

r

-e>-

5E

©-

*T7

Soon a ray of exquisite

sunlight, but always

the constant, slow career of wondering thought,



a new, sweet responsiveness between high

strings

and low

Strings (doubled above

in Clarionets).

^

S

T

r *

e-

±

r

r

r

1'

JL

-Horns.

£

-<5>-

-N s/ Strings. 300

«

r

r

t

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING •-

if

-I

2*

-&

-

i

-<2_

I f f

X

f f

3 -sj-

42-

*/

And now, reassuring

rrrrT

at last, a

more

friendly, home-like,

word

Strings (with sustaining Clarionets).

-^

i

3

i-r "W

3

I

«— « —

I

tt

-^

r&

fee

^e

-9-

-j-

f f f

r

\

-<5>-

"N

t^V

J&"

Answering Woodwind.

-i.

HJ

J

?gfc

zlte

£*

f f f

t

r

u2-

ti

§E

h&-

*N 301

-j-

^~

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Then we

fight our

way

out of the gloom in

triumphant struggle, crowned by the song

in big

swinging rhythm of the Adagio melody, more soothing than ever, spreading

^

its

soaring chant,

*/.

&- «

«_

$t .«

tf^L#.

m

-W—t—W-

1-t-t

r

m W-

v—lfc-

yp

Jl

x. i—

5=F1 — I

r

|

I

-4 Ib gJg—t

w

=)-

I

I

mm

f

&.

—& 3&-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING with answering voice in peaceful

bass,

thought of end.

song there

down

far

in

duo, singing

And

smooth-toned

away with no

from the serene

right

that special, intimate touch of

is

none but Schumann.

And when

the

melody begins

ing instead of ascending,

again, descend-

we have reached

the

unshaken because

best again, the purest trust,

deepest laid, answered above, and again uttered

with a broadly worded conclusion, maintained with big,

And

here

conceived Allegro.

pauses.

still

;

is

no Beethoven ever

a phase that

certainly, never in the heart

It is

the poet of

Romance, the Jean

Paul of music, of unforeseen

and feel

of an

surprises

of

mood

;

most abrupt change, you never the lack of inner essential connection and

yet, in the

significance. It

is

Trio.

somewhat the

feeling of the

second

Absolutely without traditional prescrip-

tion of form,

more than half-way through, the

storm of the Allegro ceases, and an entirely

new melody

— outwardly! —

begins,

charged

with that deepening feeling which has so strong a resemblance to the devotional. call

it

a secular chorale. 303

It

We

was the

might

mood

in

r

:

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING which Schumann wrote himself " Eusebius" and it follows here with the usual fitting inconsequence upon the heels of Florestan. Chorale-like

it is

j-

£=& =ti

a

~2~&.

^

tf- **

i&-

a.-

of the wood-

in the half-notes

F

p dolce. jSL

-fe

bi

£

-&-

-Q.-



re-

wind, followed by strings descending in hollow

unison -&-

i W=f=f and then the the

wood.

-jb-

It is

r

strange

r

how

In reality,

whole texture.

with a haunting sense that

(5>-

You it

earlier verse

;

* new

felt as

is

a closest

are perplexed

has sung before. in a stirring pulse

but slowly

3°4

quarter of

merely external

it is

For a moment there breaks

from an

3

m?-

idyllic chorale in a

this irrelevance.

part of the

-Ut

fe

we descend

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING into a reflective vein

on the

not the psychological

That mere

chorale.

moment of Schumann.

a conscious mental spinning

is

;

this

is

pensive, sentient dreaming, free of alge-

more

braic thought, but with the

quence of unwitting with

Still, it is

infinite

running on as

if

measure of verse

Woodwind and

4

Strings.

J

---£=&sr ~&r

logic,

perfect se-

-&-

tesg-l

J

£3= -&

-&-Q.-

-&1(2.

-&-

t=

Then earthly are

as

the run of strings reappears, the

hymn

back

takes on a

new

in the old discussion

spring,

and we

on the strumming

phrase, with abrupt, authoritative ending of the 20

305

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING dispute in a pause that sets

all

wondering, ex-

pectant that Florestan with his boisterous train is

coming

to say the final word.

gentle, pensive Eusebius

has a

new note

assurance.

See

Instead, the

once again

enters.

in his song, a turn

how

the

He

of quaint

melody now descends,

without the old questioning

Again the strange

Then

timid

unison.

charged with a pious

spirit.

the end of one of the final refrains of the

chorale, before

we have

figure has stolen

in

sounding

its

horns it

in

the chorus enter with firm, conclusive

strain, still strongly

At

retort

is

had not been

another old

;

discovered

it,

an old

the primeval legend of

perennial phrase, as though

silent

memory

all

rises

the earliest beginning 306

along.

And now

from the musing of

r

-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Woodwind

(doubled above and below).

^

—J. 3t

52. te

&

^'


1-

Sempre crescendo.

a

-y

p

r



¥=£-

:&

^3frf: -I

^

fff

"ftp

^-f I

I

I

Z.0W strings.

Somehow it does not fit ill with the Eusebius melody. And now see how, while this sings in three-measured rhythm, the legend sounds in the

brass

in

perfect

accord

of independent

rhythm, the old one of four paces.

While

former vanishes, the

with slight

latter continues,

intervals, until the end, and, all in

the

unconscious

agreement, the Eusebius melody floats above in

triumph

;

below the

strings are

still

striding in

the strange three-paced rhythm.

Then takes

in the last great verse, a big phrase

command

;

it

reminds us a

little

of the

and somehow suggests, too, the song, though more broadly, of the first melody of the last movement. Still, first

Allegro in

its

eccentric gait,

Eusebius has not subsided the great throng.

;

he

is

paramount

Indeed, he has the very 307

in

last

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING word of

He

song.

clear

seems to broaden,

almost to smile a gentle blessing

the end.

at

But the big melody does, indeed, reconcile the feeling of the first and last canto of our epic.

What

we

say to

it all ?

Surely so

beauty can only come from

sincerity.

unity

shall

we must bow our head. It is a symphony. Yet next comes the

here

is

;

true, a great

trying question

unity

mood

clear

:

What

proclaimed?

is

It

of the great Beethoven poems that

not of the

Schubert.

later

these.

from

But

in its

dells,

It

not of the

;

earlier

Mozart; definable

It is less

has not their universality,

of conception.

their bigness recoil

whose

feeling

certainly not the

is

for

all

this

is

we found words than

much The

romantic

It is in

cosmic completeness.

their classic

narrower roaming

among

romantic

bold heights, and shaded valleys,

it

makes

a smaller, but hardly less perfect circle of

own.

In

its

and dreaming

delving

it

its

goes

beyond the reach even of our attempt at enAnd here it is, perhaps, titling or summing. lesser

seems,

than the

meaning

the earlier intensity

clear

symphonies, where, of message

of mystery. 308

It finds,

forces

it

the

somehow,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING apart from the broad careers of cessors, a

new

its

great prede-

cycle of untrodden path.

It

has

not, perhaps, their bigness of view, nor their

somewhat confined within the fancy of the Teutonic nation. Yet it

breadth.

poetic

It

marks the

is

truest circle

of

its

own beauty and

justification.

In

its

from the

recoil

classics,

it

lacks their completeness of view. its

necessarily

Therefore is

more

Man

in the

very purpose from the beginning

special.

It is

a

symphony, not of

broadest sense, nor of Life, but rather of a certain very high conception

of the Teuton poet,

complete within the limits of nationality, and

of a more all,

idyllic sentiment,

lost in the

which was,

after

broad scope of the older masters.

309

:

SCHUMANN

(Continued)

Third Symphony.

Our

first

sense

thing to say.

It

It

content,

more

then

it

has some-

a certain stern strength for-

seems to have some special poetic

which

it

is

struggling to express with

definiteness than the usual

phony. first,

;

;

clearly not joyful, like so

is

many symphonies bids.

of vigor

is

So

vague sym-

suggests three kinds of works

it

the entitled

;

those that are untitled

lastly,

and vague even to the composer

;

between them

are those that, while untitled, are definite to the

composer, and are meant to show a meaning purely on the musical merits and

means, without help of verbal

The

question

rises

mind puzzling?

:

Is

Music

it

is

by musical

label.

right

to set the

not a graphic

art,

nor explanatory, nor logical, but purely emotional. all

Hence,

why

he knows, and

withhold the

let

literal

should not the master the hearer enjoy. label ?io

tell

Still,

to

does seem to save

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING music from the ridiculous position of being eked out by words

in

its

What

purpose.

is

We

must get over the fact that music is not meant to be graphic. Even if music were to paint you a perfect picture with all the details, or tell you a thrilling story, it would really do nothing. You would catch it the answer?

much

better in colors or in words.

Therefore

making clear an outside meaning must be abandoned as, after all, frivolous, irrelevant, unworthy. Even if we are accused

the element of

of

false

pretence in writing

must simply bear

it.

down

we may,

in writing,

sense of a subject, in

words, and ask

risk

of

we must

Only

in so

tell

the hearer this

to feel with us, at every

false accusation.

him guessing

we

be burdened with the

may we

him

title,

But, of course,

not really try this tonal painting. far as

a

All the time

we

set

We

must never try to ennoble our art by setting it on a throne of verbal significance. If it communicates a poetic mood, it does enough and the highest. Whether you call your work a Rhine Symphony or a Legendary Symphony or Feudal or is

wasted.

Primeval, anything within the great

field

sug-

gestive of the particular direction of the soaring

3"

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING thought or the color of the

Whether

be enough.

it

spirit's

will

be just the Rhine or

Ganges is not necessarily a Music must not fear to be

the

with

mood

real gain.

irrelevant even

instance, to

rush off into an

apparently frivolous by-way.

For the very un-

itself;

for

conscious impulse that suggests the flight

more

relevant than

any

is

carefully conscious plan

And

and keeping to the plan.

thus the very

attempt at consistent picturing defeats the whole object of spontaneous expression of feeling. will take care

of

itself,

and prove

its

own

It

veri-

fication.

In this symphony, for example, knowing the

"Rhine"

title

(which Schumann suggested), we

should

describe

words

not

;

our

impressions

knowing

it,

in

certain

with certain

others.

But in any case, these words are not the symphony itself. They would change at each writing. They are only meant to suggest. And whether we

know

the

faithful to the feeling

we

title

and

or not, if

are

intelligent in our art,

bound to reflect the mood, words. In some we come nearer to are

we

in

whatever

the original

feeling than in others.

Of

course, there

is

no doubt that 312

in

some

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING cases the particular

may

be more

mood,

denned,

catch than in others

difficult to

where there

for instance,

if specially

is

a dream of partic-

ular national legend or locality, to a foreign ear.

And

here again the answer

poser

Don't waste time

:

in

must be

to the

com-

puzzling the hearer.

him all possible. Let him enjoy with you. But in any case it ought to be purely beautiful. Only in so far as a special subject dances before the mind of the writer, may the uninTell

formed

listener

puzzle to a

certain

Beauty and meaning

are blended to

tinguishable degree.

Where

vaguest for definite words, are apt to talk



ficance has the stress, beauty of.

There

is

not to be in

no dividing

itself the

;

its

lost sight

—nor

sway.

mood

signi-

Signifi-

cance must be unconscious, unstriving.

both are equally important.

signi-

Beauty ought

only purpose,

ficance to threaten to usurp

where

almost

line.

is

Mozart— we

as in

is

an undis-

meaning

the

merely of beauty

degree.

But

Meaning of poetic

leavens the vague beauty of sound to a

wholesome message. It is

not unfair, then, to take every hint the

master gives.

So,

first,

we must

313

see

how

every

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING title is

" Dritte

German.

—no

begins " Lebhaft," is all

not really

Symphonic"

it is,

foreign Allegro.

and

This

essential.

Strong and rugged

is

the

central

firmly standing on the basic tone,

quality,

which

it

is

which holds a lingering pedal point beyond its natural domain. The melody is strongly grounded in the tonic chord. It is loth to part with,

Lebhaft.

Full Orchestra (Woodwind

in higher octaves).

i—

J

-I

/TTTmi EZvl£j8

1-

mn

; j 4 —0^0-0-0 r-t

— — S r r z r 0-t

(22-

f<

0.-

=0—

— L£ —FrifrTf

1

rf-ri

<5>-

rtr

3*4

-

it-

r-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING not flowing, almost severe and rough

;

resolute,

not insinuating.

But the

less cantabile

the melody, the

continuous and unending,



more

the compensation

melody must have an early end by the very requirement of its symmetric beauty in its charm lies the necessity Striking

in all things.

;

early conclusion.

So, conversely, the

for

its

less

of melodic rotundity, the more spontaneous

and unlimited the progress.

much

So here

there

is

of that special power for sequence, for

the course of narrative, that

Schumann was

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING These sequences (from

foremost to develop. the end of the

might well go on

Soon

quotation) seem as if they

first

forever.

the original refrain

greater chorus than

sonorous solemnity,

before. is

out the symphony.

m

The

with

In the repetition, a phrase in the

answer

J

J

9

X

1

brass,

strongly present through-

of new vivacity appears

w

taken up with

is

3

Bass doubled below.

all

carried along with that logic

and narrative that makes

all

of sequence

seem equally worth

Almost the essence of the movement is contained in the rhythm which appears everywhere, especially in horns and basses quoting.

£

zm&

=^EE

Now

the subject enters again with wonderful

depth of device, as the oboes, clarionets, and

melody a whole beat and violins, and yet, instead

fagots are singing the

behind

flutes, brass,

316

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of

conflict, there

The

is

but a richer magnificence.

feeling of depth

growing upon

us,

in

of unconscious design step with the

is

symbolic

Again comes the fluent phrase, which helps to a cadence, simmering down to the music.

quiet lyric feeling of the second melody, mostly

woodwind, with but faintest reminders of more solemn background. in

Woodwind

i 3

(with the low strings sustaining the harmony).

d&£

IP"

£-

z&~

"its

1

f P

^

S~

r /T

A

%

-fZ.

t=

tz

Then

it

swings with bolder plaint out into the

major, but quickly returns to the stern theme

of the beginning. tion of objective

There

and

is

a very similar rela-

subjective, 317

of

fate

and

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING victim, to the

first

Allegro of Beethoven's Fifth

Symphony, though we have no thought of a similar extension of such an idea. But the repeated prayer of the second

and the

stern

melody suggest the analogy But right here there is a for the moment. sudden glad complexion of the main figure, progress of the

that

spoils

first

the

continuing symbol, while

enhances the charm of the poem.

—on through

high-spirited burst

From

a phrase

more meditative

it

the

which

sustains the feeling

in

Then suddenly back

to stern business, with the

vein.

rapid run, with relentless power, in fff, interrupted anon with curious, delicate cogitations

on the echoed phrase. Now follows the second melody with a new profundity. For, as it sings on high in woodwind, out of the depths Woodwind.

Strings.

3i8

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

A

J.J i

rises

an interrupting echo, both voices chant-

They grow, mutually

ing independently. inforcing, losing

the

power, in which

is

in

the

first

subject reappears

it

The element of by

climax of

comes no longer in terrible but rather by natural expectation.

the basses,

interruption,

a

blended the vigor of the

When

rapid phrase.

plaint, to

re-

passive subject

is

not

lost

;

but

the courage of companionship he has grad-

meet the nearing

ually nerved himself to

fate.

We

must not commit ourselves to one image. Here All are shifts to utter the general mood. there

is

a

new

If forced

spring.

whole had the feeling

phrase, I should say the

of some Stern High Festival,

omen, but

still festive.

to a single

Hear

de profundis 319

—big with this

deep

solemn echo

.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Tutti.

^ui^Ml

Throughout

there

is

this

^£jl sf%J_

High

feeling of

solemn undertone, where the bass constantly speaking, and finally breaks out

Festival with is

into

subject, joined

the

later

by

the whole

chorus.

The second melody now sounds more

human

than ever in the contrast, with slight

change of higher swing.

Soon

reflection ap-

pears in the dual discussing voices after

a

climax

Strings, Oboes,

(where,

before,

;

and now,

the

subject

and Flutes.

&

PP Cellos and Basses 320

77



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING sounded powerfully) surprise

is

the " best" again.

of harmony, trembling

and wood,

in softest tones, sings,

horns, not the

melody

itself,

in

high strings

down

but

In

its

in sacred

essence in

simple, drawn-out sounds. It is

the very

spirit

and voice of ancient legend

sounding through the hallowed woodland,



in

the whole passage, where the horns, at last rising

dim meditation hovering about, down and away into unseen depths, as suddenly the clarion woodwind ring to a high note, gradually sink,

out

irregular,

conflicting

through

cries

the

forest Oboes.

Cellos (doubled below

Then below

in the Basses).

higher uncertain

in united

calls

horns and lower

are answered

wood

;

later is

the simple cry of this legend-spirit, twice re-

echoed from highest woodwind to lowest 21

321

brass.

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The echoes

continue on broader phrase to high-

est possible grandeur,

melody,

itself

is

in the

beginning

the echoing phrase, in

loudest union of nal verse

emerging

all.

rehearsed.

fullest,

For some time the In

its

midst

is

origi-

a gloomy,

uneasy dying away of broken phrases

in

the

anon come cries from the pleading melody. It might be the Loreley witch and her victim caught in the forest

Out of

wood.

it

" Kommst nimmermehr

aus diesem

Wald."

But presently sounds again the firm note of main theme. And now all is in gladder strain. There is a new glow of epic joy, with a crowning burst at the end.

It is

the clearest epitome

of Teutonic legendary poetry. Scherzo.

We are the

spirit,

ment,



Sehr Massig.

surer than ever that

when we come

we have caught

to the second

move-

Schumann has German to a foreign

the only one in which

descended from his sacred

and so That shows its importance I should call there is no doubt of the humor. The it an heroic ballad with humorous edge. word.

national color

;

is

here of the sharpest. 322

To

one

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING who

of the Rhine,

But then tions

German

ballad

be somewhat of a

riddle.

known and

has not

may

it

all

it is

felt

the

the clearer from

its

very limita-

:

Sehr mdssig. and lower horns.

In strings

=3:

1

t£ mf

P

1=1=^

ten.

^Sj He£

S3 r

Fagots and low strings.

m

p:

3^3±§

t3 ^=»

^J^ T r

p

r You

x

can almost see the words under the

score, beginning, say

" 1m hohen

Burgverliess,"

and so spinning along to the drive of the song. But it must be a sombre old ballad of dread ;

323

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING some impossible happenings, not without a grim sort of ancient humor. We danger, and

think of such tales as of the old robber knight

with seven sons on the scaffold request of the

answered

whom

:

his last

to spare his sons

was

that he should be saved

and how the condition was

;

all

Of

in cruel jest

how

the father's headless trunk should ap-

proach with

Emperor

;

fulfilled

seven.

no absolute need of all this interpretation. In any case, there is no mistaking the sprightly beauty and poetic treatment. But there is surely much added charm in the knowledge of the special association in course, there

is

the composer's mind.

The melody

is

and returns with

finely varied in other verses, telling

Then comes

nal one.

of our ballad.

A

climax to the

origi-

more puzzling canto curious theme, made for a

musing mystery In Fagots

and Cellos.

jlj-JjjUgg

H

n

i

)J j *-i

-i-

-v-

324

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING begins in

basses

and threads

mystic and

its

complex way through the varying

voices.

It is

not simply that the poet's thinking-cap after the lyric burst.

It

is

of ancient prehistoric things,



tracing

its

on these

in

the

both

races.

things.

For

o'er

on,

a wandering strain



" eine alte

Rune,"

dim world of days when fate hung

fateful paths in the

gods and men,

heavy

is

not the pondering

It is

this

a ballad.

is

It is

the

things themselves.

The dark

phrase winds on

In Strings

N and

JEhh^tf^

belozo.

now merges

however,

it still

into the heroic strain, where,

holds equal sway.

In the third canto

human,

destined course

and Woodwind.

B-* #!• Doubled

its

is

a

new



element,

personal, the purely lyric.

the

But anon

the ancient saying sends a warning reminder, 325

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and the glamour of legend

is

not

lost.

It is all

poetic in the highest degree

Woodwind and Basses. X X i X

(Violins.)

3^fe

i xJ

.

3-*- •

PP #£ 3EZ

&-*--



Cellos and Basses

It

more modern

sings in a

Now

the

with more into the

first

*

vein.

verse returns in a brighter key,

brilliant resonance.

mood of

once again as

end

{below).

Then

it

sinks

the third phase, and emerges

at the beginning.

Towards the

are quaint, primitive refrains of the begin-

ning of the

first

melody, with 326

its

answer, a

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING kind of " Yes, yes," again and again, and sug-

The ominous second

gestions of the third.

good, indeed.

strain has vanished, for

In

its

absolute isolation from the rest of the

symphony

the Scherzo

from attempts

at

niscent theme,

it

is all

Free

the greater.

connected meaning by remiis

really all the

more

relevant

to the general plan.

In the third division the air of legends has

gone.

Its

very absence here proves their reality

and acquits us of rhapsody. the scope of the symphony broadens.

Clearly,

before,

so

have been

far,

Here we

human

all in

to the core.

And

might,

the realm of the myth.

are in the clear sunlight

feeling.

It

it

is

So, probing for

of

idyllic

German bearings, we think

absolutely

perhaps of a " "

German Symphony," like the Scotch" of Mendelssohn. Nor would this be wrong.

far

But Schumann's has a higher and

profounder national significance.

is

The Andante melody here Nicht pure German folk-song. There is

rest

from

As But

earlier

a placid

mysticism.

national song

it



schnell

it

reminds us of Schubert.

has that special vein the 327

Germans

call

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Nicht sch nell.

(WOODWIN D.)

Strings.

i* t=A

FT*

" innig," it

in

which was Schumann's own, although nowise touched his leaning towards musing

thought. earlier

And

here, too,

symphony.

is

contrast with the

There was nothing

" innig"

about primitive legends. Like most Andantes, plicity.

No

this

is

of

profound depths are

lyric

sim-

stirred, as in

movement; and no bold heights are gained. The first melody is merely followed in and out by another of equal simplicity, with the

first

hardly a change of tonal color 328

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings with accompanying Horns and Fagots.

t^m

P p>——i.

0-0-0

In the middle they both sing together, and a

new answer

leads into a phase

discourse, of

descending

which

figure,

this

is

is

new

strain, a

lesser topics.

freshness.

It is

The second

one returns with

first

The end

has some of the

friendly touches of the former,

logue.

simple,

evident throughout, so that, at

the end of the talk, the a

new

the principal subject, with

many digressions and melody, too,

of gentle, intimate

all

and of the

dia-

clearly a ray of earthly sun-

light before entering the cathedral, in the fourth division.

The second slow " Feierlich."

is

marked

If our object be to prove the ex-

istence of a meaning,

very direction

movement



we need

" solemnly," 329



say

little.

The

a single glance at

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the score,

show

And

the intent most plainly.

see at the outset the utter contrast of the so-

lemnity at the beginning of the symphony and

by the of Waldhorn,

here, though, in both, expressed

For

brass.

was the quality sacred to the religion which lurks in the forest from earliest Teuton ages. Here the brass is the there

stern

dral

it

dogma, the overwhelming power of catheorgan, where the visible architecture is

We

mirrored in the massive polyphony.

member

Schelling's definition of architecture

Not only

frozen music.

feeling in both these is

re-

is

there solemnity of

movements, but

in

both

it

Yet could there be a greater actual Again we must bow before this

religious.

contrast?

power of music to make us feel the strength and quality of these influences. And the fortunate tone-poet can simply give forth directly their essence, without the

things,

might offend

much more that

still

lingers

stern truth

To

be

his

is

he

And

powerful.

show through

in sacred

others, or rouse the prejudice

Not only

of bigotry.

words which, safer in

music, but

so he can actually

tone-poetry the soundness

of the old religion, and the

of the new.

just,

however, there 330

is

undoubtedly

in

^

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of Schumann's symphony rather a

this episode

picture of mediaeval

German church

spirit

than

a direct utterance of personal religion, like Bach's

Passion music.

There

is

of the

clearly a sense

and the greater stress is perhaps upon nationality. There are local and temporal There is, limitations in the religious poem. throughout, the constant sense of dogma no picturesque

;

;

personal melody

of

priest-lore

;

;

all fitting in

the

a perfect system

main theme discoverable

being a short fugal one, beginning in trom-

Feierlich.

Brass with

pizzicato

Strings.

Ma S*

-4-

w &r=bw- te— 3=Sfc

pp

,

J &£=^=bw¥=&,

t

bones tence

in all

-<5>-

awful minor.

i

*-t-

t At



*-

ipr

±=t

the end of a sen-

join in a loud assenting phrase,

theme from the

is

surely nothing but the quickened

it

suggests an overwhelming

Amen

which

multitude in the body of the church, eagerly 331

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Whole Orchestra except

Oboes.

Flutes in upper octaves.

J-

3=£=S=^=^S4

1-

\=t b-#-

-&-

f

-•-

-&&: -&-

r responding to the liturgy of chancel and choir.

Then

dazzling,

colossal,

its it

the doctrinal structure really begins with

must

it

end,

is

—no

If

enter,

:

first,

suddenly twice as

eternal

rate,

are they

all

with

fast

is

?

the

rhythm,

a motion, but with great, ;

and, finally, with the

—what

Different doctrines about the

central truth

is

These

but in even movement again,

?

there

there

progress.

in simple, march-like

heavy, three-paced swing

same

And

breaking in one upon

changes of movement,

same theme

what

attitude),

gentle cadence of secular tune,

make an

the other,

curious

wrong

the

be in transient sound.

on and on voices

But

net-work.

puzzling on the score to the lingering

is

glance (which

no

massive

Or varying

always one

attitudes

same

of worship

central, single idea.

33 2

?

— ;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

We

cannot, however, ignore the constant

gain in intensity, together with actual speed,

of a

betrayed

eagerness,

certain

strings

in

trembling in the theme, with sustaining horns

more and more

a personal reality of feeling,

and then, suddenly, before the end, a breaking off

of the

united

fateful progress,

burst

and a human cry

new key

in

in

or color of tone

then back to the former march, and again the interrupting burst.

Strangely, the end

massive architectural climax.

human rigor,

and

is

not in

Rather, the

last

cry has prevailed to soften the former

and the

sincerity

first

phrase has a certain simplicity

of Lutheran

chorale,

with

much

diminished conflict of voices, with hymn-like cadence. Finale.

There

is

ever the danger for writer and reader

to forget the true weight

and

figures

subject spirit

;

;

that there

is

really

minded of suggested.

translation of fixed

the general

is

by simple enjoyment of

beauty of the art-work.

have

no

content

that the real

perceived

of interpreting phrases

With

this in

mind, we

much more freedom we are many things this and of that ;

;

But none of them 333

the

re-

are

are really essen-

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Where

tial.

they are thought of by the com-

where they are mentioned by him or even set down as governing subject, there is the

poser

;

best reason for holding

still

to the

same view

that they are not absolutely needful to the right

perception.

And

yet, for the

purpose of sug-

gesting the beauty, the sentient meaning, they

may

be of the highest

use.

Once having

entered

on the essay of telling in words of the value of a work of art, we are hopelessly cramped if we are restricted to the mere setting forth of technical structure.

Therefore, our figures are indis-

pensable for suggestion

;

for literal interpretation

they are worthless. It is

and

fifth

more in this of our Symphony,

well to think of this once last

division

mainly because of the great danger of

and

final association, to

which we

definite

are lured

by

movement with the Having given fair warning, we shall

the fine relevance of this first

four.

not fear to deck our impressions freely with suggested figures.

At

the

very

beginning, with

this

strong,

simple, virile song, with eminent brass, and free, rolling bass, there recurs, to

is

one German word that ever

which we can

find

334

no English equiv-

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Lebhaft.

Strings, Flutes, Clarionets, Fagots (

Flutes in higher octave.)

-~Bf

HE

-st-

— — i-

I-

-&

t©-

dolce.

-si

feBEg

BE

fc=f

i

:q-



Z5I-

^S

£*

sj-

a:

-t&i -»-&»I

l

fcs

f"

r It is is

_^_L

JO-.S.

5=fe

alent,

izjzq:

-(5*-

--

f

-j

and Horns.

which we can only

the spirit of

a " Rhine"

German

f

describe,

burschikos.

university

life.

As

symphony, by the master's

it

ad-

mission, as he did celebrate the old minster at

Cologne, scious

we

are probably near to his

idea with our word.

own

con-

In such a sym-

phony, teeming with the typical

ideal life

of

German, this element, of the university spirit, would hardly be absent. At any rate, its main qualities are here, the stirring, soaring

the

335

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of the cynical world, firm with

spirit, fearless

manly

tread,

and the rough humor, too

;

they

are all here.

But

this

not

is

Nor

simple of content. restrict

And

all.

our suggestion

properly.

It

is

to

is

The course,

But

at

it

is

not

all

so

necessary to

the academic

life,

a larger view of the bustling

doings and thought of the old city, sacred to

it

German Rhine

higher interests and ideals.

choral song

for a while simple in

is

its

and needs no study but the hearing. the end of its full refrain emerge the

four horns with

more than

casual theme, while

the violas are supporting in their

own

livelier

way

The though it

is

rest all it

take

it

up, not exactly fugally,

savors strongly of the cloister.

Surely

a reminder of the solemn old cathedral

phrase 336

;

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING In Trombones.

i

m

-A pssfe but pert

much faster. Then as answer comes humor of this phrase Strings and Woodwind.

IV Wj

•i

1



*•

(Doubled above

x x j

tt

N

ibttf

treated

in Flutes.)

4Jgi j4L

= fc r|-i

n

*/P fe-

the

j

3= +

?





A

t

s

-to— X-



:-#-»- #-!—

*=S=£ :t

with the same fugal

£

suggestiveness

ending with a good, honest blare from the horns.

Now

we

are

of the beginning. of an

sion

earlier

back

And

in the

here

is

march

spirit

a longer exten-

episode of quieter feeling,

which did not seem important before. It certainly takes away from the masculine harshness of the

rest,

or heightens

it

as foil.

From

its

close succeeds a fine antiphonal shout of chords, as all the

wind responds

Suddenly

this

«

is

to

wood and

strings.

tempered to hushed minor 337



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING chords

midst

in their

;

we

hear something like

the old cathedral theme, in

its

lighter phase

Strings and Woodwind.

&*

J-

JLJiif-

^H—

--ri -25)"

g

-^-^_h-U^ ES*

t=

(

Then and

Z3" 2?"

-Z^ "2?

-tf-

-»S>-

•*- -#-

~N

5

—5

£__ =L

-Z5I

P-

-3

(Strin GS ALONE.)

(Violins.)

P

3=3= _ g&fe & i5rJ

-ii- -gi

£

Violas.)

the comic theme struts in again, here

there,

high in piping wood, while our

quoted, more serious motive

is

last

singing low in

alternating strings.

No

apology

is

needed

for seeing

here the

master touch of quaint, mediaeval, scholasticism, with comic hue,

above the flippant

— below the pious —much

studiosus,

famous scene of the monk 338

priest,

like

in Schiller's "

the

Wal-

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Camp."

lenstein's said,

Alas

soon as the word

is

The humor is not Perhaps Schumann did

seems too much.

it

expressed, of course.

not ever dare to think there, the

more

it

There

neighborhood of the

monastic and of the secular, and the

seems to predominate,

was

conscious stage.

strong for sprightly.

quaint

certainly the

But

to himself.

it

truly, in a less

Comic may be too is

as

!

finally

latter

ending the

epi-

sode in a melodious blast in the brass of true,

honest

German

feeling

Woodwind and

String.

(Doubled above.)

UAM^Mi

4__L_«L

--m 5??

-&--

4.-4-

f-

ff Added

w~

%%

I

&

L

& U?

to all these themes, really the sinew

of the whole,

is

a certain constant

from the quieter middle of the

first

softens the saucy wit of the one,

movement

song, which

and the

serious

tone of the other, and gives to the whole a friendly

kind of

caught and

summed

of the horns,

from

sincerity,

is

specially

in the (last quoted) strain

—more than

full heart

which

and lungs. 339

ever at the last time,

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING And

so straight

on

into the

first

chorus, with

same vehement sincerity, with its succeeding joyful and friendly phrases. The brass have more and more to do. Sometimes they are

the

given free

by

room

to themselves alone,

strident strings.

end, they

all

stop for

with the starting of a pace in low fagots vals

—answered

When we

seem to see the the last verse, which begins heavier and more vehement

strings, in stern

fugue led off by

and two horns, followed

by other groups,

all in

Woodwind, Brass and

at proper inter-

the old theme

Strings.

In they come, four groups and more, until

we can no Just as we

longer see or hear them distinct. lose the sense

of bearings

in the

architectural mass, they join into a closer body,

and soon in a great

are shouting united a last acclaim, all

hymn, which

is

340

neither religious nor

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING secular.

Too

broad for

either,

it

includes

them

both.

So in this German Symphony of the Rhine seem to merge all the inspiring influences of the nation. But it does not need its title. It speaks not of localities, rather of memories and of aspirations, which, though they may have special association,

belong to us

34<

all.

XI MENDELSSOHN The

critic

cannot always be optimist and

eulogist.

The kind of

that

tries

to

The

truth

is

accept, that,

catholicity

to

not good

is

approve

everything.

whether we will or no, we

cannot say our honest say without some implied disparagement.

If

is

it

without exaggeration,

mere

it

impossible to admire is

easy to blame by

Our vehement severest word against

praise of

one

another.

If

we

in general, our praise

of

silence.

often the

were treating of music

Mendelssohn would be unbounded.

is

If he had

no symphonies, we should not, in omitting, ignore him. But in our special field, there is danger that by faint praise we may do some written

damning. The very high place we for the

symphony, holds us

of our impression.

may

After

to

are

guarding

an honest

all,

telling

what the man

must gain. Mendelssohn was all but master lose, the art

est sense.

It

may

be unwise to ?43

in the high-

make

shelves

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of lesser and greater poets

it

;

certainly

But we must be

a rigid ranking.

is

to try

clear in

mind

about the word we are often using, that implies such a mastery of the ship

merged

is

art

medium,

in clear poetry,

where we can no

longer see the lines of conscious indeed,

most

may be Others may

expressive songs.

profound

But

This

toil.

architecture

writers

is,

and

there are lesser

There

greater forms.

over

Then

rare.

that artisan-

of most

have the power

of

simultaneous

must be quickly seen. Those works wherein the whole structure is of another art, not created by the musician, cannot test and prove the true master like those which, voices.

absolute,

this

independent in

tones alone, evolve

with inner power a perfect structure

Thus

own.

all

their

a writer merely of greatest song,

of oratorio, or of opera, has not measured

power cult

in the

pure tonal

art,

which

is

most

his

diffi-

because of the very absence of words.

Here the very

perfection of form, rounded

by

a certain unconscious process of crystallization,

and greatness.

attests its truth

A

common

this question

mistake as to this special power,

of form, must not be passed over,

Strange to say,

it

is

a mistake found as often 343

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING with good musicians as with laymen, perhaps

A

oftener.

very

composer

respectable

of

national note once gave the author his recipe,

which was

Get your themes and

:

the established moulds. original

in

There

tion.

are

your sincere

too, be

form follow the

in

In other words, be

about your melodic subjects, and,

harmonic treatment, but

them

fit

strict directions

no other forms

world than these sacred ones

:

in

self;

of tradi-

in the

music

the sonata, rondo,

dance, and song; and, of course, there never will be.

utter

most strange this, because it betrays lack of the very idea of composition. So

there

is

It

is

this constant,

almost hopeless confusion

of form, the abstract quality, and parallel, is the

con-

Just so, by exact

forms and moulds.

crete

special,

confusion of thought, the pro-

cess,

with special thoughts, so that the scholar,

who

has never wondered beyond his precise, logic,

literal

can see none of

man's process, unless

it

this highest

be uttered

language of makeshift.

It

is,

in the verbal

this,

the

cause for the low conception of music.

does

it

mean

precisely in

?

he

words

says. ;

You

therefore 344

it

of

cannot

main

What tell me

means nothing.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING He

does not see that

all

that his literal language

by the shifts of a limited lot of conventions, by vain labels aimed at high ideas, by combining these in rough images, the does

is

to suggest

inner thought that

He

utterance.

is

sorely struggling for true

cannot

or he surely will

see,

not, that this very utterance

joyous shifts,

in

is

far clearer,

more

the language, not of conventional

but of pure tonal beauty.

Finally,

he

has never reflected that in his logic, sacred to the language of prose, the true essence and

power is the sequence that this sequence may be where the terms and premises are other than verbal indeed, that there can be no greater secret

;

;

scope for this sequence of man's highest thought than in melodies, their contrast, the depth and

complexity of

their

combination, and in the

complete cycle of their roaming career within a tonal poem.

To

return

to the

former question,

we

find

such a mistake, not of the layman, but of the respected musician.

Originality he praises in

theme and in the agreement of simultaneous tones. But this quality of all, which is the final test of the master, he makes a mere matter of school-boy's cramming. So we can never 345

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING remember too

often that the quality of spon-

taneous utterance in form true to the subject, utterly distinct

deed,

is

it

from memorized schedules.

is

In-

hostile in this sense, that every true

composition must vary somewhat from the outline

A

of any

earlier

man had

far better

them flow by

let

work

its

own

individuality.

take prosaic themes and

own vital motion to an lay new melodies, however

their

organic whole, than beautiful, in the

for

dead mould of older works.

So many evils spring from this that great stress must here be allowed. For men will either insist on the rigid, fatal formalism, or, revolting, will welcome all abandon of complete structure.

The

true reason, I suppose,

culty of perception. in

architecture.

And

Just

highest to conceive, so

it is

as it is

lies

in the diffi-

not very different quality

this

is

the

hardest to perceive.

may

In the " frozen music,'' a child

admire, in

a cathedral, the embossing of outer doors, or the

beauty of interior detail

;

catch the bold leap of the tower feel

youth

a ;

the massive dignity of vaulted

a

aisle.

he must be almost a builder himself prove

Now

the in

completeness

music

it

is

of

actually 346

man who

will will

But will

rounded whole.

still

more

difficult.

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING For the cathedral

symphony, the shall

we

we

Still,

?

ever conjure

hard or easy,

sight of this greatest it

may

and

rele-

we cannot

lose

We

study. is

We

The

The more

paradox.

more he has a

may

melody, the

basis

truth

the

of

is

enjoyment

here almost a

knows, the

hearer

earlier study, the

be his enjoyment. fitness

are apt

the need of conscious

forget that the greatest

most unstudied.

careless

And, indeed,

of elements.

much on

together

all

it

not be so bad a problem.

to proceed too

en-

;

forget the past

to feel the test of perfect sequence

vance

in the

tones have vanished

first

chanted with the present,

and how

But

ever before us.

is

more

The beauty of

of contrasting subjects, the

cycle of rounded path he will feel without the

need of more consciousness than the creating

But

master. ignorant.

let

High

there be

no

false

notion of the

mind to enjoy as Once for all, would there

art requires

well as to create.

were an end to those nauseous phrases of the Philistine,

proud of

his

ignorance,

that

he

does not understand music, but knows what he likes.

It

must not be thought

something inherent

that there

man more whereby he may

in the natural

than in the natural animal, 347

is

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING catch

thoughts

great

without thinking.

It

would be a very false gospel to preach that great music is very easy to see by a certain trick.

The

approached

masterpieces in far

humbler

of music must be

of the original purpose of the entertainment If

it is

It is all part

spirit.

art,

whether of

of highest moral message.

or

the former,

it

were an unworthy kind of

materialism to spend so much time in mere preparation for an

amusement.

So, again, this talk

of the Philistine about the lack of meaning

in

music, this easy judgment of the blissful ignorant

on what they

like, is all irrelevant.

They

do not know because they have not looked. If they were not so serious, they would remind us of the famous

Sam

his father in court

Weller,

who

when looking

did not see

straight at the

ceiling.

Mendelssohn

the very type to test this

He

seemed to have all the qualities, any one ever did. And, indeed, many of

mastery. if

is

them, of

vogue

all

in

but highest value, are sadly out of

modern

days,

such as

the

much

neglected elements of absolute clearness, and

of thoroughgoing refinement spirit.

He

is

in detail

and

in

charged with lack of depth and 348

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING In reality, he was most

of intensity of feeling. sincere in his very

freedom from that pseudo-

passion that seeks, in

false whirl, to

its

cloud of dust, covering great, primal

throw a

faults.

Mendelssohn was most lucid in many-voiced building and strong 'in massive treatment his ;

power over the

palette

bred in his very

of orchestral colors was

With

fibre.

all

these,

which

led to success in other paths, he lacked in per-

sonal quality to use.

and

employ them

in their highest

In his wonderful expression of local color his objective depiction,

he was more affected

by an outward stimulus than by his own subjective feeling. Mendelssohn made no advance in the outline of the symphony over Haydn. It is, therefore, significant that,

he shows no inherent strength feeling or ideas.

On

correspondingly,

symphonic the contrary, he was driven in his

to find emotional content in historic sentiment

or in scenic description.

These subjects belong

more properly to the lesser overture, and here Mendelssohn was in the first rank. It is under the head of form that, it seems, Mendelssohn falls short of the measure of master.

And

here he serves wonderfully to illustrate

the great virtue of the

symphony. 349

If

we could

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING use another word,

we should be After

coldly technical.

all,

glad,

it

agreement of

common

purpose.

about

nor

is all

it

;

is

There

it

is

each

for in

of

live continuity,

regions of the

all

less

exactly the

is

same quality we have been searching succeeding master, that of

—one

work

the

in

nothing mysterious

the trick of handicraft.

It

a matter of sincerity, intensity of purpose.

If a child has a message to give,

and he

is

and value, he

will say

it

absorbed

in its truth

many

without faltering to

come when

will

munication

is

people.

The

halting

the natural impulse of

The

weakened.

com-

principle

is

exactly the same as to the clear, continuous

homogeneity of a work of art. In the master symphonies the motive purpose was strong

enough

a

sustain

to

clear

thread

and plan

throughout.

The the

real trouble

want of

sage.

is

feeling,

The outward

not the lack of form, but

of the content of the mesincoherence

sincerity

mony

art

merely the

None of

sign of original weakness.

ments of the

is

the ele-

of music are so keen a

of the prompting feeling

of outline.

It

is,

sense, the true justification 350

in

as that

test

of

of har-

the spontaneous

of the whole,



like

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the final answer in algebra,

which

verifies the

proposition. It

will,

of course, be said

How may

:

this

spontaneous perfection be distinguished from the mere imitation of old exemplars

much

the

same question

of greater or

lesser

of

when we

said

its

is

as in other imitations,

from poetry to

art,

Sometimes the earmark of the strictness

It

?

false is

adherence to the

true.

lace.

the very

Thus,

above that Schumann's Noveletten

were, perhaps, his greatest work,

it

was from

this

very conviction of the powerful coherence of the various episodes in a plan of radical novelty.

symphony, in the very highest meaning, our quality of form does not relate so much to the completeness of the several movements, as to their mutual relation in the whole. It is something like the old truth, that two halves do not make a whole, that of four perfect symphony movements the whole may be actually Finally, in a

less

than each of the parts, in poetic value.

There

is,

then,

no

technical lack nor

want of

we find in Mendelssohn. charge we can bring against him

detailed beauty that

The is

greatest

that his symphonies

idea of the form.

do not

Even

fulfil

so, there

351

is

our highest

no denying

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING their

enchanting beauty

the sincerity of their

;

clearness, thoroughness, self-restraint

purity of their tone brilliance

the high

;

charm and must merely

the poetic

;

We

of treatment.

withhold that highest of

a strong,

all qualities,

pervading, uniting, subjective feeling.

In other ways Mendelssohn showed that he

had not that intensity of personal feeling which expresses itself in highest form, breaking, in the

hands of

later masters, the fetters

and extending

their limits.

of the

earlier,

Rather he genially

reflected other poetic conceptions, as in his rare

music

for the

Midsummer

Night's Dream.

But, on the other hand, Mendelssohn was sincere in his very moderation.

of the

false prophet,

who works

conscious state of false passion.

of

fine

mean, he

the profound

treated.

had none

himself into a In his balance

strikingly

differs

of the masters we have

He

from most

He

sympathy of Beethoven

had more than Schubert.

The

but he

;

which fancy, where

quality

somewhat opposed, that of light imagination runs away with personal

is

had not

feeling,

shared with Schubert not unequally.

he

But he

had not the bold scope of Schubert's mind.

He

was

rather the

orthodox musician of 35 2

his

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING century, setting

its

sacred dramas and services,

celebrating picturesque scenes and striking his-

But the writing of oratorios in the great sense had been accomplished in the previous century. Here he was, after all, a follower. He was original, individual, chiefly in his special tory.

extension of

seen Schumann's attitude.

But

sufficient dignity for the great

instrumental music.

Therefore

overture.

works

are

Night's

his

scenic and little

scenes

Dream and

was not

forms of pure

seems that

the looser

his greatest

from the Midsummer

his striking overtures titles.

of his time.

and represent them

as did

Schubert in their age, and national

way

in his.

He

Beethoven and

Schumann

in a lesser,

downward

may

Men-

tendencies.

The symphony must demand, once the subjective vein.

did not

But, then, neither did

delssohn represent certain

there

with

Mendelssohn had touch with the great stirring spiritual and historic

intellectual discoveries

utter

it

It fitted better it

have

Mendelssohn's was

poetic in the highest degree.

of

We

Programme Music.

for

all,

This does not say that

not be a special

title,

implied or ex-

But the treatment is of the inner, individual view, not the mere outward depiction.

pressed.

23

353

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Here the Scotch Symphony only continuous purpose unity

it

;

short.

Its

the Scotch character

is

This

of the melodies.

falls

is

purely external

a

does not affect the personal conception

However

of the poet.

and tempting with complexity,

exquisitely beautiful

rich depth

its

we must not

and

brilliant

invite the reader to a

hopeless search for such an inner meaning as the

symphony,

the

in

Symphony

Italian

But

our view, must have. here

stands

distinct.

Evidently the intent here was not the outward,

There must have

national likeness of tunes.

been a certain Teutonic subjective conception in the musician's

of the work.

mind, which pervades most has the true plan,

It

complete fulfilment. tion of Italian

It

skies.

if

not the

was not a mere

reflec-

rather the

inner

It

is

which every German poet has of the Mendelssohn land of beauty and art.

picture ideal

has certainly suggested Italian

The name titles,

Symphony (No.

" Italian," unlike

4).

many

musical

was constantly used by the composer.

The work ment

this.

is

a direct expression of that enchant-

for the ideal land

of beauty, joy, and

354

art

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING which has held Germans captive from the earliest invasions of Goths, through the attempts

at

conquest of a

Barbarossa, to the

poetry of a Goethe.

Exactly opposed to the " Scotch," there

is

no

actual trace of Italian nationalism in the music.

German, a pure German expression of delight. So the symphony is not graphic or It is

picturesque

it

;

German

of the

The

first

is

a highly poetical utterance

idea of Italy.

theme,

in Allegro Vivace, gives the

Strings.

i s

&* fr=8=t=

jez

-h

f

-i9-

iSr

l*=£

£ #-44:fi

±:

&

Woodwind,

fill

#-g

^2.

j2.

:&

^

£

increased above.

.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING stamp of simple joyousness to the whole movement.

the leading note,

It strikes

which

re-

is

flected in various lesser melodies.

The

texture

of the whole

It is

impos-

sible

and

is

wonderfully close.

to trace outwardly the subtle similarity

The

relation of. melodies.

first

builds in

the very beginning a stirring climax on

own

theme, resounding at

the basses.

of

airiest lightness.

a

fluent

phrase

melody.

By

sequence

it

like

the

save

You

cannot

it

is

new

movement

of the

main

of the

of

trick

phrases, hardly

merry pace.

It

a wonderful fresh-

bubbles forth in a new guise. mistake

hidden personality.

its

The second melody, which spirit

suggested by

and by the the

in

the element

is

first

close

evolves ever

gives the whole

Ever

the

at

deft turns

first

ness.

This

vigorously in

last

Throughout, there

its

first,

is

continues

the

sacred to the woodwind,

Clarionets and Fagots.

t_i

=j-

Se 356

m

s=£

:^uZ*

-)

•-

m



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING though the

strings are lightly

dancing about

playfully.

The melody

extends into purest song, quite

merging the dance clarionet calls

Faintly a solo

at times.

from the distance, and presently

the merry chorus of the

first

theme

are all

about, quite drowning with their festive bustle

more

the

The

delicate note

best of

is

it

after this presenting It

begins

threaded

with a

its

of the second. the sparkling discussion

of themes has been repeated.

way, we cannot

source in the cadence of the it

is

which has how, from its melody. But

phrase

restless

tell first

too volatile, too incessant in

chatter to take the lead

so

;

it

its

shallow

soon subsides into

mere companionship with a theme of greater dignity and distinction, which now enters. Again we feel its kinship to the others, and its fitness in the

whole

;

but

we cannot

trace

outwardly

it

P^%P^ -i

j

I Of

—— —T~pn

a B jI

«

4

*

f

357

,

I

i

-A

tis'f Bf

-3 — -I

—s— —zd i

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Around

it

develops, in the strings alone, an

episode purely fugal, yet without the least odor

of the lamp, nay, with

all

the fragrance of the

The minor gives it a touch of sombre romance. From the almost prosaic hilarity of the beginning we wood,

of the truest poetry.

full

have plunged into the land of strange legends, into

dim mystery of

myth.

history that merges into

Into the midst the

wood, then

first

theme

first

in the

still

the fugal play continuing, yet

taneous, fresh, and

bursts,

in the brass, alternating

smooth

that

all

so spon-

you do not

think of counterpoint unless you look at the score.

makes

It

is,

indeed, that highest

art,

which

show of means and of difficulties, concealing them beneath the wealth of feeling. This stage of the two themes is of highest least

interest,

as

it

is

Woodwind and -JL-J

now

with successive

Strings (doubled above).

-J— iim-w-JL —^§j£ =t

9t=t=5 r

fought

J32

ri^ Si'Mt^TT i%

i

Cellos and Basses.

358

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of one and the other,

assertion

full

with equal

same time.

insistence of both at the

They

now

are so different in

humor

of dark romance, the

:

the fugal,

melody mere

first

holiday gladness. Strange to say, the

no

the

part in

official

discussion.

after a lull, the original order

the second appears in a

second theme has

But

when,

later,

of tunes

re-enters,

new way, sung

as duet

But even here the darker-hued fugal theme intrudes its humor, first lightly in the minor. But as it grows more vehement, it is squarely attacked by the first melody in the original key. After a struggle of a few bars, the latter triumphs, and holds its cheery sway to the end. of cellos above violas.

The melody of perfect lyric

poetry as

it

the second

embodiment of

appears to the

movement

dened with a wealth of legendary folk-song

it is

is

Bur-

feeling,

indefinable

;

it

in

sometimes a setting of a strange

ballad of foreign other type

a

a phase of Italian

German mind.

belongs to a rare type which

is

land.

We

we found common

in

remember

Beethoven and

Schubert, in the Seventh and in the 359

that

C

Major,

#

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING and we wonder

at the idea

great melodies.

I believe

of thus arraying

you would

all

find the

melody of mystic, almost philosophic search another class of dim legend or ballad as here

We

another of intimate, friendly confidence.

might

try to analyze

sound, but

we

what makes

this

prefer intuition to hard proof.

Andante con moto. Fagots and Violas (doubled an octave above I

*

STT^

J 4

m



— z?

in the

strings,

wood.

theme, and the

in Basses).

ai± feE*

«—

of the charm

±H

*z#

^SS ment of

:N^

4-4

Cellos (doubled an octave below

gfg^

in Oboes).

i

d

m

p

Much

legendary

lies in

fTp t=3t

the stately

move-

while the song proceeds above Later, the violins take

flutes join the obligate), 360

up the

somehow



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING picking out a shadowy counter-melody in the

movement.

Indeed,

it

is all

melody,

simple verses of a ballad, telling

its

like the

sad story,

So

without reflection or overflowing emotion. the next verse

is

mysteriously told by strings

alone, in the minor, the violins singing the story

to the fateful, ever present

accompaniment of

the lower strings >.

In Strings alone.

-=1-4

£gfe

P

£iJT71 «: ***3=*=*£

i*=

r There

is

a queer bit of

He

pure Mephistophelian.

at the end,

must have sold

Immediately follows a touching

soul. all

humor

human

in

major,



a

new melody

his

strain,

in

the

clarionets.

As

more and more intimate vein, it is rudely stopped by minor strokes which herald the original ballad, though not in regular verse, mere vague memories. Once more the it

flows along in



human

strain

enters with all the contrast 361

of

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Clarionet

X

---

Strings

sharpest colors.

The whole

ends in the

full

atmosphere of legendary mystery.

The idyllic

There thing

and

Scherzo

humor.

is

bucolic

and

playful, with

But the relevance

is

not

clear.

German ears, unmistakably someof their own folk-song in the melody, is,

this

to

more

that of a

specially because the cadence

well-known

Volkslied.

Indeed,

is

the

Scherzo seems a mere setting for the gem, the

362

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING H

1-

^ _L

I

T

1

A it* $-

Trio, with

its

intensely romantic melody, for

horns and bassoons.

supplies all that

It

we

crave in the placid simplicity, almost plainness

of the former. the Scherzo

is

And but

as if to convince us that

to the Trio, the latter

foil

pervades the close of the Trio.

movement:

Horns and Fagots.

Violins.

M-=r-

mz±&&m 4L-4 J ¥*

J q

' 4

#

q

^

L-

&-

j*

.#_#_

.-^2: -K2_

3 But of the whole its

it

must be admitted

place in the general plan

not

is

does not seem to have a value of

its

clear.

It

own, pro-

portioned to each of the other movements. 363

that

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The

Saltarello

is

conceived

in

that

special

vein of Mendelssohn's, of lightest fancy and

from the humor of BeethoMendelssohn's dance seems that of an

rhythm, so ven.

different

imaginary race, which knows of nothing but joyousness

;

Beethoven's

Yet

listener

the temptation

the Saltarello the

to is

human are

accidental

beings.

dangerous, association.

too great to suggest in

humor and

Hawthorne's " Faun." the

of

and examples

Illustrations

tying the

is

It is

poetic antics of

based largely on

rhythm of the main melody P

leggiero.

S7~~

Presto.

Flutes.

Woodwind.

XLT HT UT It

is

one of those phrases

that, lacking in

seem capable of endless extenand variation. In the incessant motion we

definite beauty,

sion

are almost

reminded of the Finale of Schubert's 3 64

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING great

But we dismiss the thought

symphony.

before

it is

are of

no

The

uttered.

intermediate episodes

special importance.

In the middle

is

a striking passage, very similar in conception

and construction to the fugal one

in the

movement, where, on the

imitated in

figure,

first

il^rt^i^ canon, there

strict

is

built

what

is

really

fashioned round in dance-rhythm, at in strings, gradually

an old-

first

only

embracing the woodwind,

the whole forming one of the longest episodes in the

symphony,

—an

orgy of dance and of

counterpoint.

Altogether

it

seems that a noble plan

is

sug-

gested and sustained with vigorous feeling and

high art through the

first

two movements.

In

The fourth has a certain clear agreement with the name " Italian."

the third

In it

its

it

seems to

halt.

purely objective, almost graphic treatment

might stand with more perfect

last

of a

suite

fitness as the

of independent tone-pictures,

than as the conclusion of a subjective poem,

such as the

first

half of the 365

work promises.

XII BRAHMS The symphony was

not in agreement with

the reactionary attitude of the Romanticists.

With nal

the return to Classicism

finds

its origi-

Mendelssohn showed

importance again.

his lack

it

of the true symphonic thought.

Cor-

respondingly, his form was largely mere imitation

of the

By

old.

more nearly ters.

As

in

his

this line

double

test,

Schumann

is

with the symphonic mas-

untitled

works expressed

truer

symphonic feeling, so his freedom in treatment and in structure was path-breaking. Still, one often feels that he

was only about

to realize the

He

was finding his way. He was transplanting his Romantic spirit in broader, highest grasp.

classic fields.

In so far as this

spirit is reaction-

forms

are,

There must be

this

ary, impulsive, intense, specialized,

needs, abrupt, fragmental. perfect correspondence ing.

You

bottles.

its

between form and

cannot pour new wine

The

writing of symphonies 366

into

by

feel-

old the

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Romanticists was a

too conscious.

little

wisely refrained entirely.

they

felt

They wrote because

a challenge rather

from without than

Schumann, however, the most

from within.

profound of them, gradually

was deepening and growing to

The

as

sentiment

his

his vision broadening,

was

the mantle of the classic masters.

fit

real

Chopin

heir,

it

another, a younger,

is

often

coming

said,

at a

was to be

time ripe for

mature survey of the great preceding schools

which group about Bach, Beethoven, and Schumann. Instead of reacting from the classic and its

forms, he mastered

He

them from

the outset.

grasped more thoroughly than any other

the polyphonic depth of Bach's style.

the

first

to unite

it

with the structural

and boldness of Beethoven.

how

all,

line in pure,

new

have seen

still

had never found a worthy out-

unsung music*

dress

absorbed the

was

was freedom

the vein of Bach's musical thought, pro-

foundest of

the

We

He

Brahms gave

of secular form.

spirit

it

Finally, he

of the Romanticists, which

crying for more complete utterance

so that, while classic in his form, he

* See chapters on Schumann. 367

is

often

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of Schumann.

His work is strictly in fulfilment of Schumann's ideals. It sometimes seems that in a purely Romantic called a disciple

period there can be

of

final

symphony does not

thus the It is

little

And

truth.

specially suit

it.

the age for fragmental bursts, breaking the

leading strings of a too limited classicism.

When first you come in

into a garden,

unknown

boundary and contents, you dash here and

there in reckless enjoyment, like the bee sipping irresponsibly.

This

Romanticism, with

is

singing of separate beauties,

of pure trace

When

feeling.

outlines,

limits,

its

its

predominance

once you begin to

order,

you

a meaning,

enjoy the garden as a whole, not in wild, frag-

mental profusion.

This

dominance of form. final

is

Of

classicism, with pre-

the two, the latter

the former necessarily precedes.

;

The symphony plete view.

It

is,

national. ^ Here

is

a final summing, a

must be

action,

a

com-

in its true nature, cosmic,

lies

not

the reason for that strange

lack of patriotism in the poet Goethe. there

is

Now,

in a classic period a classic re-

strong

element of

intellectuality.

There is, besides the mere utterance of emotion, As against inthe problem of reconciliation. 368

— SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING tensity

of feeling there must be breadth of

Depth is more needful than velocity. Romanticism is like the minus quantity in

vision.

The

algebra.

natural reaction from

it,

romantic

from romanticism, brings back classiThe more novel and fresh Brahms is

rebellion

cism.

more he suggests the serene classic repose. But it is in the style, the manner of his working, that we must expect the in his feeling, the

And

sharpest difference.

perhaps, most inspiring.

it

here that he

is

Schumann wrote of

Brahms's youthful works under the Paths." sense,

he

But he right

It is

title

"

New

quite possible that, in a narrower

merely breaking paths for others.

is

and urging the

heroically pointing

is

is,

He

way, though the narrow.

insists

on

uttering his truth within the perfect language of

one of the is

by

not

in the

polyglot of

internal mastery in all

linear

in

arts,

its

It

dimensions,

melody, in extent of form, in .depth

of architectural polyphony that he art,

all.

strongest

and profoundest of

all,

raises the

to a plane

higher than ever before.

Brahms seems, direction

of his

intellectuality. *4

at times, greatest for this art,

for

Every one 3 69

the is

very

courage of his afraid

nowadays

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of high

art

and of

Let us not believe

cry.

In

against us.

are

Low

of pedantry.

slur

count.

man

If a

art

the

seems to be the

though the masses democracy does not

it,

art,

is

We dread

defence.

its

charged with intellectual

ought to bring a presumption of greatness, not of weakness. Romanticism pays that

stress,

die penalty for

its

abandon of the

The

art.

mad rebound

principles

in the

extreme

and quality of high

looseness of Schubert, the intensity

Schumann, the realism of Berlioz, were naturally followed by modern amorphism and of

sensationalism.

Because a

by the

On

few,

man is

difficult to perceive, is felt

is

no reason against

the contrary,

his greatness.

speaks something for his

it

originality, for his freshness

and

truth.

It

was

Brahms's great deed to lead back to the high level

of the masters,



the only vantage-ground

from which music can answer the charge of lack of meaning and worse. vigor, the novelty

of

his poetry,

appearance, was such as to

Romanticists, led

by

joined their ranks. is

so

Yet, by inherent

flatter

Liszt, that a

No

on

his

first

the extreme

new hero had

outward act of

artist

impressive as this resolute step of the 370

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING youthful Brahms in turning sharply

N

dominant school of shallow aims.

that

His life and work mon modern idea of that a poet

is

of Brahms

is

which has brought

art

it

commonly heard abnormal. The work is

it

necessarily

of the kind to show that high

the very essence, the true abiding-place

is

We

of pure reason. the linking of art

abandon

have heard too

and poetry with

overwrought

to

dissociation of art

and

ethics.

manent, though not the

first

too

It is

all,

much of

irresponsible

feeling,

world sees that the highest of

is

com-

are a rebuke to the

such reproach, so that

art

away from

much

time the

most

the

per-

to reach applause,

the art which, yoking profound intellectual

mastery with wealth of feeling, stands for ness of experience, held in rein

how

clear sight

/S

and a moral balance. Just

by a

ful-

this quality appears concretely

actually in the music,

we

shall see later in the

reading of the symphony.

by an almost complete

and

In general,

return to the

it

is

mode of

writing of Bach, except in the matter of structural

outline.

We

great master of the

remember how, with church

style,

the

music was

a perfect polyphonic tissue of themal voices. 37i

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Then came the pure monophony

sharp secular reaction, with

melody with impersonal accompaniment, of itself without meaning.

After

:

a single

there can be, ideally,

all,

dig-

little

nity in a stereotyped harmonic figure, however beautiful the melody.

PCTS5= So

far

there can be

church reality

an

as

ideal

theory of music goes,

no doubt of the

The

style.

question

and truth of

saw a return

in the

its

superiority of the is

of

its

test in the

We

poetic content.

great secular masters to

architectural polyphony.

But with

all its

gran-

was not a permeating element of their art, which was still based on the idea of a single melody with harmonic support. Duality or plurality of themes existed merely successively, with the Churchmen it was or horizontally deur,

it

;

simultaneous, or vertical.

We

saw, too,

by and example before Schumann, far more than Mendelssohn or

none of the secular masters were Bach's influence

who

absorbed

Chopin.

summed

So in a

it

how

far as the quality

of

word, that of Brahms 372

affected

style is,

may

be

in essence,

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING a reconciliation of Bach's

mode of thought with

secular freedom of outline, that in its perfection.

Mendelssohn. One

Still,

well-nigh ideal

It goes, in this respect, as far

beyond Schumann as a possible

is

as the latter is

went beyond

tempted to view a Brahms

Bach symphony.

one cannot gauge the

power of Brahms

artistic

It

must

music or measure

A

it

first,

cannot

by a theory, however

man may have

a perfect outward

mastery and lack poetic content is

be,

You

a question of the poetic reality.

ideal.

twofold

in proportion to this

master, however impressive.

write

value and

always found in imitators,

;

who

though

this

follow the

manner of another. Brahms was no disciple for Bach had written no symphonies. Again, however, we remember that in periods outer

;

of formal development poetry often

So

it

may

lagged.

be that Brahms has prepared the

way

for a greater.

Even of Bach the highest value seems to be an influence which reaches the world only through the works of other masters. So it may be with Brahms. His indirect power may be the greatest. There is no possible denying the nobility of his aim and attitude in modern days. 373

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING There cyclonic

is

a

modern

effect,

for

striving for unrest, for

barbaric

emotion with a capital E.

brute

force,

for

All true sentiment

must be unconscious and so the effect upon the hearer must be unpremeditated. You cannot expect to see the emotion it must not be too palpable. We must not be able to say, pointing, here it is else we must also say, here We must not regard it as a frenzy, it is not. The as some definite, individualized thing. truest emotion is one which is most subtle, not ;

;

;

seeking to trumpet

its

war-cry, to conquer an

audience by the violence of

its

On

noise.

contrary, careless of immediate reception,

the it

is

the expression of the personal feeling, soberly controlled, not roused to

We

do not

unmanageable

care to see a

man make

or roar himself into a state, either at

excess.

big eyes

home

or

in the concert.

We

must not get into a false way of measuring emotion by its brute force. A work is not great in proportion to the

number of

The

drums, as Berlioz seemed to think. feeling

is

like the still small voice

kettle-

;

it

is

true

the

essence of a great personality unconsciously

betrayed by highest

art.

374

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

We

recur thus naturally at our close to a

vital point

of the beginning

of the musical generally.

art It

art.

Many

Few

will persist as to poetry.

seems clear that

if

we

not the mere language, insist

on

its

deny

all-important,

is

view to

w e must T

In music this has been

If a noble personality can be

music, so can an

expressed in

this

agree that the content,

soundness.

entirely ignored.

music as

the ethical phase

:

in poetry

possible

it is

In

ignoble.

by an

extrava-

gance of outward beauty to bribe an audience

unsound outpourings This is another modern

to listen to the morbid,

of a weak

spirit.

We

danger.

listen

much

too

with exclusive

attention to the rapturous beauty of the sound.

We

do not think of the

the ethical effect. less

ethical quality, nor

we

If

did,

prominence to music,

Chopin.

sound

The

spirit,

question

is all

for

we should

of

give

example, of a

one.

The

like the true sentiment,

is

strong* tested

by thorough mastery of the art. It proves the quality by its divine patience. Brahms stands out strangely cold against the intense extremism of moderns. But the nobility of

his

position lies in

temptuously

a classic

rebuke, con-

indifferent, to the hysterical 375

men

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING of

tears

and

sighs,

of rage and storms, in his

perfection of form, in plan is

and

There

in detail.

a giant power, a reposeful mastery without

strain,

without lack of a corresponding strength

and breadth of writing

is

the latter

in

his

the result of his poetic personality is

not

fitted to

At times there workman over the and

The manner of

feeling.

Mozart.

is

the former

a preponderance of the

poet, as there

was

This suggests that he

in

Bach

may

Yet

be

a

Mozart

is

a pervading personality in the originality of

his

for a future Beethoven.

melodic thought, and

of his

style.

He

it is

from the abuse of the toilsome path

in the

who

which

all

376

homogeneity

has rescued the art

by following masters must tread.

schools

false

there

;

XIII BRAHMS

(Continued)

Symphony (No. 2)

Once more

let

in

D

Major.

us strictly carry out our con-

new

stant plan, reading the

master purely and

absolutely from the score of one of his works,

taken at random, seeing no comments on the

music nor on the man, so that from the most

we may

perfect evidence first

get our impression,

of the symphony, then of the poet.

new

figure, writing in the clear air

who

is

This

of to-day,

same breath with Beethoven and Schumann, what can he have to say that is comparable to their thought ? And it must be new. To echo them, even to add corollaries to their truth, would not make him spoken of

in the

a master.

Our

first

novelty,

sense

—the

neue Bahnen.

is

what Schumann meant by At the same time it is of an old

latter

The

primeval feeling. the sentiment

of blended simplicity and

is

of

all

expression

time. 377

is

all

But above

new all is

X

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING that

unaffected

direct,

simplicity of

melody

which we found stamped on Beethoven

;

the

spontaneous thought, without pretence or

evi-

dent

The

effort.

color

is

the mellow, placid,

legendary quality of horns and fagots.

The

very beginning, the

first

three notes in

the bass are most unpremeditated. the

melody

broad, even

Nationally,

undoubtedly German,

is

sweep, losing

its



accent in

syncopation of an endless cadence

;

an

that

the

utter-

Horns and Fagots. Allegro non troppo.

Cellos, doubled

below

in Basses.

Clarionets.

* P

A—

(Doubled above

J:

-&r

dolce.

<

I

u

^= —

1

in Flutes.)

-i

f A -&-

=^=;

378

#4

PFP

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING ance of the ancient Teutonic feeling of Wagner with the

classic dignity

modern romance;

the

of a master. there

in

is

not

It is

the placid

horns the suggestion of the heroic in repose. Little

the

is

here of the vehement contrasts of

Schumann Romanticism.

classicism, with

Bach

style.

the

all

\ There

It is

a calm neo-

workmanship of the

an entirely new poetry,

is

more illumined, coming forth from Romantic caves and dells, enlightened by the revelations of a time that makes havoc with clearer,

old fancies and illusions.

It is distinctly

broader,

humanity of a Beethostrong morale : more national,

yet not quite with the ven,

—lacking

his

too, in color than Beethoven, in spite

of

differ-

ence in time, and in this respect more special

and romantic.

German

Slavonic, with it is all

has more than the mere

it

There

spirit.

conventional

But

Yet

is

sentiment, its

a

new

as

if

breath in

its

including the

freedom of tone and rhythm.

northern

;

there

is

no recovery from

the reaction against Italian domination.

And

always the tinge of Hungarian

light-

there ness,

is



clear against

German

heaviness.

Soon appears a melody in the fore human and more modern 379

/

strings, there;

the

heroic

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING quality

suspended.

But the key

is

the

same

;

no progress in tonal residence. It is all the shadow of the first melody it is, as yet,

there in

is

is

;

no new

episode.

-fr-

H*-#

Strings with Sustaining Brass. 10 dolce.

Jl I—

J

I

J

'fS-j-i-

Flutes.

We

know, however,

have not the

official

melodies where

has the clear

title

themes here

importance they had in

Haydn and Mozart. eral

that the

Constantly

it is

difficult to

to the 380

we

find sev-

decide which

nominal rank.

Often

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING it

seems that the function of the old second

among

melody

is

strictly

second in

divided

several.

succession,

character though not in key,

There

is

one,

contrasting

whose main

in

busi-

weave about the first melody, in simultaneous harmony, the architectural tissue of the discussion. The real second melody comes after duly ness later

is

to

solemn preparation, down In mood,

main

it is

and

violas.

a return to the primeval air of the

subject, especially

Strings.

in cellos

(Melody

when

in Cellos

and

repeated in the

Violas.)

mm^m

^4

+#-

fc* i

woodwind, trebled

in

distinctly the episode

with

its

it

has the

r

hollow octaves.

It

is

of the movement, an out-

ing from the main theme. gently,

i

'-$£-

Though beginning

germ of power, and rousing

plain figure 381

»

:

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING

repeated through various syncopation

_\^1«U

3ZZ& it

M|

:t: 1

Wp_J

u mu

«, 1

1

1

reaches a climax of heroic

and rough

gait,

>1

1

effect,

with sharp

with a strangely nervous motive Doubled

in Strings.

* / which we shall speak later), lapsing soon into rhythmic background before a phrase of slow, even swing (of

Rhythmic Clarionets, Horns, and Violas. (

Violins, the second time.)

J^=o=^r^z^!^^^iizi^^tf_^_ :Kfc

X-

#L

—«a—

S

#'

r

-«a

#(»; «fc

Fagot, Cellos, and Basses.

/ r

#fe

t=£===t=t:—

*

-*=4—

/

3p=

382

*



SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Violins doubled below.

But slowly and dimly do we bass, another

phase of the figure of the episodic

The

melody.

feel here, in the

effect

a kind of

splendid,

is

feudal, heroic pace, well set

and maintained.

It is like

a crusaders' march, banners fluttering

together,

men tramping

is

Throughout

in step.

the spirit of Barbarossa and of mediaeval

Suddenly

story.

the

second

steals in the gentle

melody,

now

flow of

serener

in

major,

through which we return to the beginning for a rehearsal of melodies.

With Brahms we must tude. The infinitesimal phonic net-work in Schubert's

C

is

vary a

little

detail

of

Major, loses too

many of

to

may,

too,

be an

this

atti-

poly-

such that the broad view, as

beauty, especially in the age still,

our

us,

the

when Brahms

new enigma.

a

ulterior

much of

is

There

purpose with us to see

383

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING something concrete of this novel

we have

be, as

hinted, that there

But the

artisan than the poet.

style.

may-

It

more of the

is

cannot be

line

drawn. In any case, a nearer knowledge can but

We

help.

must, then, magnify our view (or

hearing) at least for a few periods, until

accustomed to detail.

this

Indeed,

workmanship,

if

we

are

new plan of highly defined we once take account of the

as such, there

I believe,

is,

more

bewilderment of architecture in Brahms than

any other master of all time. have

this

in

Not only do you

pervading unity of small

detail,

but at

the same time the broad lines of the general plan,

and the poetic unity of the whole work.

It

as if

is

Brahms had

written his

work once

from the structural stand-point, and then had entirely worked over the whole, point by point, with minute, almost invisible perfection.

It

seems hardly possible for one creating mind to

have

at

once

this

double sense

:

one pervading

plan in the big, another in smallest execution.

Brahms

is

probably

far the greatest

the saying that genius for

work.

is

an

example of

infinite capacity

Either kind of unity would seem

to suffice even for our high standard. 384

Brahms

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING actually combines both. is

mere workmanship.

Yet, in

itself, all this

value must

Its real

lie

unconscious use for utterance of a poetic

in its

conception.

A

few glimpses will give a hint of

vading perfection of

To show

detail.

this perit

in full

would need almost a description of every note in the

work.

We remember fore the

first

the innocent

little

phrase be-

melody

ij=: In a curious way, with

all

our enjoyment of

the melodies and their structure, the further

we

more we

are

go, looking at lesser figures, the

magnetized by the constant reappearance of this

motive in every guise, until we wonder

whether is

this

as if in a

a

is

symphony

house of larger

in three notes.

It

of beauty, we

lines

caught, at second and later views, the strange

omnipresence of some arabesque curve, of hid-

den meaning, on

and small, In the

now first

ceiling, wall,

all

floor, large

but disguised.

quotation

we saw

beginning and end, with *5

and

385

least

it

creep

in, at

possible show.

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Throughout the cadence from the first melody we meet it. In the long drawn out chords we cannot escape

magnified

it

:

Flutes and Oboes.

Drum.

^s

when first

NlSl-T

^

S-T-

>>

\

s_,

Presently

ss.

H—

Ei=S



Bra

P

~W

we

see

gtt^F

-J2_i-

it,

even where

it

is

not, as

But surely the three notes of the second melody are but a the sun

is

in

our eyes.

quicker pace of the same motto

for at its close

;

And now

the original tempo appears clearly.

it

comes thick and fast, until the second theme brings a rest. But the nervous phrase which

leads the crusaders'

form of those to

go

first

march

is

again a shorter

three notes.

farther in this analysis,

matical for real enjoyment.

It is

which

We

is

can

not good too gram-

now

have

a dim consciousness of the significance of the 386

;

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING him

it

course, with

was the mere simplicity and economy of

highest

Somehow,

art.

sciousness

We

Of

constant treatment.

master's

is

it

seems, more con-

needed to perceive than to

create.

a sense of that strangely firm

get, too,

power of sequence, more subtle even than Schumann's, though without his passionate intensity. With Brahms it brings a hidden, yet strong connection of distant regions of the work,

which

is

symphony

the

It

various

We

each other. the last

rather than thought.

felt

ure of his genius. filigree

of

his

movements

reinforce

shall find a light, cast

movement upon

must be that

In a true

the

first.

in the discussion

is

But so complex

poetic diction

the elbow-room of a

book

We

from

to

the measis

the fine

that one needs tell

of a

single

must be content with a quicker and cruder view. His symphony is a kind of great modern fugue, where hardly a phrase is not a melodic fragment. Brahms has reduced to the minimum what we might call the irrelevant machinery, rhythmic and harmonic, as distinct from melodic text. Yet he is never dry there is always the personal and poetic quality, though on a steady plane, with few picturesque work.

387

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING One of the

heights.

traits that

masterly sustaining of vein

of

his continuous

He

is

;

much more

Wonderful they do not

the

the magnificence

Schumann

equable

;

less

tem-

in

intense.

Olympian levels but high as Schumann's Gothic

are his vast rise as

is

and complete workmanship.

very different from

perament

:

stamp him

;

peaks.

Quickly we view,

how the

repeated statement,

after

he slowly climbs from sombre minor of

first

melody with steady a glorious march in the second

part of the original

insistence to

More than

ever are the images of that

first

new rhythmic guise. That broad of rhythm is new with Brahms.

motto, ever in multiplicity

Then comes

the relief of the idyllic, flowing

melody, the unofficial second, but

in

answered by the motto on high, in

full

almost in stern rebuke, in 388

its

minor,

sway,

slow sounding of

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the

first

Suddenly

three notes of the former.

break in thunderous unison strokes of an early phrase

ff Doubled above and twice below.

melody old gentleness and a new

Gradually, after faint flows along with

now

soothing calm,

by

the

all its

efforts,

the

first

not succeeded but entwined

beauty of the second.

liquid



And

Clarionets (with lower Horns).

m ¥

J. -zri-

-&•

Violas.

p

dolce.

£j

"

fe

fz m

t

Cellos and Lower Basses.

thus

we

original

are in the last singing of

themes

in

manner, once more, too, with the grand

march of

crusaders.

Later

is

a burst of great

sweetness and power of modulation, followed

by a most moving groping through uncertain worlds of thought. Once more breaks in the 389



a

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING light

now

of main melody,

berceuse swing, Piu



in a

new charm of

with the motto below

still

m3

tranquillo. In Strings.

i9-

N

m

h

I

—J-* dJr B^-

There

is

a great tenderness in the ending,

flood of true feeling enshrouding

all

the



art.

Adagio non Troppo.

Bach

know how

lovers

in

many works he

merely the wonderful workman,

unexpected spot, perhaps self,

—almost

all

until, all in

unknown

he seems ashamed of

it,

to

is

an

him-

—some

comes along, nigh lost in the mass of the other. Something of this there is in Brahms. He seems to begin almost indifferent to beauty of theme and when we are true bit of feeling

;

nearly discouraged, in

suddenly comes the little

like

Wagner,

an unimportant place

human as

song.

with

390

Brahms

is

a

both their song

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING seems merged into discourse,

their poetry

But with Wagner the

out into prose.

too often iteration

;

with Brahms

it

is

drawn

tissue

is

a con-

tinuous polyphonic woof.

The melody quality,



a less promising beginning

beauty comes bar

is

here seems to have the deceptive

in the answer.

Here

;

the real

in the third

that golden vein of diatonic melody, that

inexhaustible source of highest lyric utterance Adagio non

troppo.

Downward melody

Upward melody

in Cellos.

in Fagots.

Cellos sustained above in

Woodwind.

JJ'v- J

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING It

is,

after

Then, too,

it

all,

is

the true natural

that

Brahms way of coming

from dim uncertainty to

And

so

flows

it

melodic discourse.

utterance.

clear light.

on,

pure,

The horn

self-contained,

takes

up the

word of repeated theme, the rest join successively. You do not think of the

thread of the last

fugue, but they are

talking, beginning in

all

same subject. When the discussion is becoming technical, all are set at peace with that same altogether satisfying ending of the first melody (quoted above), just like the kindest word of wisest parent. turn on the

A is

curious Adagio quality this of Brahms.

similar to that rare vein of

It

Beethoven that we

Brahms has not quite his deep He is more impersonal, like Schusympathy. bert. There is something of German folk-song here but it seems broader, more ancient in

prized most.

;

There

Pagan.

source,

almost

modern

feeling for Teutonic legend.

conception

is

higher and finer

is

much of

But the than most of

such poetry.

A

new

melody. of the

verse

comes now

Curiously,

first.

it

Beginning

;

hardly a clear-cut

has exactly the nature in a questioning

392

mood,

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING it

grows more anxious, and then

is

stilled

by

another broad, soothing cadence and Cellos.

Violins, Violas,

gga^g ^B B

ft$

TV~t~Sff

40 espi

-jrit-T«

3—*

J j"T-J"

^



3

*iat

^JTi JTi

J-

sd

X-

^JJi

fi]

3r

K.r>^

^4 4 -&

S^

i^

Once more is

the questioning, grubbing

roused, rearing

verse of the

now

He

lious doubts.

p—»

is

spirit

a stormy whirl of rebel-

laid

by

a

last,

calm, broad

main song.

Allegretto Grazioso (§>uasi Andantino).

In Andantes there tectural depth

must

is

a

new Brahms.

Archi-

yield there to lyric direct393

;

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING movement is the true poet German folk-song is not ex-

In the slow

ness.

who shows

that

hausted, as he does elsewhere in his glorious Lieder; that

it

has

new

which come from

strains,

the border-land of newer races.

movements

is

In these song-

tested the sentiment

in the Allegros, the

of the poet

broad view and structural

power. In the Scherzos there

largely

garian lightness.

of polyphony.

There

He

a second departure,

The humor of an expression of Hun-

almost as great as in the

Brahms seems

is

first.

complete absence

is

begins with

child-like

dance with odd accent Allegretto gracioso

(

Quasi andantino).

TV

f>izz.

Cellos.

There is

all

is

much,

too, of Tyrolese drollery.

It

a jolly bourgeois, not to say peasant fun.

none of the serious humor of Beetho-

There

is

ven.

Yet we do not mean 394

at all that

it

does

;

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING not belong as justly in the symphony.

Such

would be intolerable. A symphony even can bear no philosophic intent, unless it

prohibition

be quite unconscious.

Brahms's pleasant

In

frolic

the

there

of

lightness

much

is

real

poetry.

The humor sometimes others,

it

is

is

in all

kinds of smallest touches

a teasing play of voices

of groups of instruments,

orchestration.

You would



a

;

at

humor of

not catch

it

in

a

piano arrangement, as there are sudden modulations or surprises of accent.

From

the dainty

waltz melody of the beginning there darts out a queer, quick dance in even time Presto

ma non

Violins, Violas,

assai.

and Cellos. •

It first

is,

of course, a prank

tune.

here, in the

Some

at





masquerading the

touches defy

telling.

Right

next bar, the strings try to run off to 395

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING The wood won't let them. The strings urge, the wood refuse. Then they run off and for a moment another key, another play-ground.

But

play strutting soldiers.

On

heavy words.

for like

it

all

is

returning, the

too light

first

waltz-

dance has a new, delicate pathos, where a

second voice discourses

measure

A

rough

reckless ears.

fitted to the

bit

in

flowing

slow glide of the theme.

of barbaric play interrupts

Presto.

We

sweetly

It

jangles

our Western

of tonal bearings, and

lose our sense

are glad to return

in

in

once more to the gentler pace

of the German dance. Allegro con Spirito.

In the Finale

is

undoubtedly the

historic

color and the mediaeval swing of the beginning.

With there all

all is

the danger of finding fixed meanings,

no doubt of this,

that

Brahms, of course,

unconscious in the creating, stands

in the

modern return to the spirit of Teuton legend which has a strange power over our minds to-day, which has been almost a dominant poetic subject of the century. With Brahms it has a great breadth. He had much of the Ossian feeling. Undoubthighest branch of the highest art for that

396

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Born

edly his geographical position helped him. in the farthest north

of Germany, he visited the

South, and settled and died in the

we

If

theme

are asked

in

far East.

show evidence of

to

Brahms's poetry, we

may

be helpless

To our own conviction

in a legal sense.

this

appeals

most the very quality of the melodies, which, instead of modern romantic sweetness, have a distinctive rough breadth, and a strangeness which cannot speak of modern things. Simplicity

the It

is,

of course, of

least, it

Brahms and latter as

do we

in

a similar breadth in

Beethoven,

looking forward

;

we

and

stant longing for the sanctity

The modern

tions.

typed

;

Brahms

in

the

truth

was

there

is

the

Tennyson

retro-

all

for

a con-

of old concep-

lies

the poetic

realizes to the full this feeling.

of

is,

the practical and stereo-

is

ancient

thus, representative

music

The It

To-day

ideals.

former only

There was no

spection early in the century. ideas

think of the

in the

feel the historic spirit.

these periods differ totally.

new

therefore, at

;

does not jar on an archaic feeling.

strange that with

is

ages

all

his

unconscious

age

;

impulse

to the King's Idylls 397

his

was that

truth.

He in

is,

pure

drove

and Wagner to

^

^

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the Nibelungen Epic

;

and

this

is

the burden

of the symphony.

The

melody

first

enters in bleak unison of

the strings

all

Allegro con spirito. Strings.

S

*4t-7tr—

:

it*

-*

Z*

fl sotto voce.

^

m^

s

*—

Basses an octave below.

/,

4W-

-U-^4

j

s? i-

*=p I In

r

r

§

f

its stiffness, its set,

4

f

£.

F=E

cramped energy,

the feudal feeling of the

first

Allegro.

it

has

When

melody has a learned counter-theme, the atmosphere is more monastic. It has much of

the

398

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING complexity and close texture. But

it is

bubbling

with melody and rhythm.

We

soon find

that, strangely, the first four

notes correspond, as motto, to that of the

movement.

We

do not know whether we

ought to notice that the

first

both movements the same. where, in

all sorts

first

of garb,

three notes are in

So we have everythis phrase

fe^EE Through

a misty change of scene

to the second melody, Largamente.

which

Strings.

399

is

we

are led

surely one of

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING the simple, diatonic kind.

Still,

the motto

is

ever present.

With smooth, sweeping flight aloft in successive curves into a

it

lightly

wings

climax of power

seem to lie in the germ of the theme. the motto has all the say, and there is a

that did not

Now

great rollicking of pairs of voices, each in duet,

same motive coursing

in the all

rein

to the

of regular pace,

first

about, losing

all

at last quieting

down

melody.

The answer of the latter at the very beginning we cannot ignore. It has a certain ancient humor, sung again, like

as

it is

in barbaric unison, again

some well-seasoned popular

Strings, doubled below in Fagots

and

and

strain

Cellos.

j=l f r

r

lLU

Is

Basses sustaining low A.

As now

the

main melody

fragmentary perversions,

comes

in

fugally. rarest

this

with conclusive

But

it

is

discussed in

old refrain ever

air,

is

serves later to give

touches of primeval 400

even

sung

one of the

humor of

the sym-

:



:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING For when

phony.

at last the final

melodies has begun, as at

above wondering, here the basses upward,

comic answering



is

first,

chant of

and we look

a strange sound from

the inverted disguise of the

strain

na below oeiow. In Strings, doubled above and

*

vamm—mm

t=st-\

i

And now we first

are rolling towards the end, the

song of melodies

There

is

fuller

and more boisterous.

always the same feeling of march of

And

pious knights.

there are

many

of the kinship of the main themes of last

movement.

retreat

is

first

written Tranquillo in the score),

at first

strange, slow

swing

Tranquillo.

Woodwind, melody doubled (Echo

above in Flutes.

in Strings.)

4

fTT

p

r

n

r J

±

M T

Horns. 26

and

For instance, a sudden quiet

new with its four-voiced woodwind

seems in

(which

touches

401

:

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Now,

this

is,

of course, primarily and poeti-

from the din of

cally a romantic refuge

strife.

But in its melodic origin it comes not only from the first melody of the finale, but most clearly from the very motto of the original movement. It is, indeed, a melody in this very motto, pure and simple. Strictly, we have here gone back, for a moment, before the

reprise

of melodies.

Return-

ing, after the final rollicking episode, there

quaint

is

a

droning of monks' fugue, in second

melody, sung

in pairs

Woodwind, doubled

above.

& Brass and Fagots



w T**? m ^ ^

i-t^P

-\

pp

Strings, kggiero.

This broadens into a march of big idea and spirit,

with complex swing, whence suddenly

are again in the timid Tranquillo,

ond legend droning

in the bass 402

:

now

we

the sec-

SYMPHONIES AND THEIR MEANING Strings (Horns sustaining harmonic tones). 4-

Bass an octave below

Of course, this has And so the end comes

the promise of power. in

a martial burst with

rapid iteration of this phrase

from the second

melody.

Brahms may have appeared as

composer rather than

to us, in

as poet.

haps, too near to see the big lines.

all this,

He He

is,

per-

is,

too,

a recurrence of the simplicity of earliest masters.

We

must not expect romantic

definite-

But the unity of message is as clear as with any poet. Finally, he may be the pioneer ness.

of greater poetry

in the paths

403

he has broken.

INDEX Andante, 32, 45, 49. Art: Purpose, 14, 19, 30, 68-9; limitations, 30; mode of creation, See also Preface.

249, 347.

Bach, 24, 26, 34, 36-7, 40, 70, 93, 177, 260

et seq.,

271, 367

et

seq.

Beauty, 95, 96, 97, 313. Beethoven, 14, 19, 32-3, 45-6, 69, 71, 76-7, 82, 85,' Chaps. V.-VI.,

177-183, 186, 189-90, 194, 201, 226-7, 268-70, 364. Berlioz, 100, 127, 163, 170, 251, 268.

Brahms, 76, 102, 125, 129, 179, 252.

Church school (of composition), 24-27, 31, 34-5, 44-5, 71, 371. (See Romanticism.)

Classicism.

Counterpoint (see Polyphony), 25, 35, 75, 79, 91, 265. Criticism, 13

Dance

(see

c/

^q., 22, 342.

Minuet, Scherzo), 26, 34, 36-8.

Development, 38 Durchfuhrung.

et seq.,

49, 75-6, 92, 94-5,

Ethics (in Music), Preface,

Folk-Song

1

30,

1

34, 153.

(See Development.)

(see National

Form, 95, 98, 192, 250

20

et seq.,

192, 371

et seq.

Element), 49, 190, 191, 359. et seq.,

343

Fugue, 42, 54, 58.

Goethe, 72, 128, 182-3, 189-91.

40S

et seq.,

350

et seq.

INDEX Handel, 44.

Haydn, 30, 32, Chap.

70-2, 83-4, 95-6, 125, 129, 147, 153,

III.,

226.

Humor

(in

Music), 30, 59, 70, 82, 104, 167

et seq.y

225

et seq.y

322,

338-9, 364.

Interpretation, 333-4.

Jean Paul Richter, 258

Language.

et seq.

(See Prose.)

Listening, Chap. I., 152, 347-8.

Logic (in Music).

See Sequence.

Master (Mastery), 249

Meaning

(in

et seq.y 342 et seq.y 350, 369 Music), 17, 96, 98-9, 100-1, 125 et

154-5, 167

et seq.

,

249

et seq.y

270

et seq.y

et seq.

seq.y

148

278, 308, 310

et seq.y et seq.y

330, 333-34, 344 « *7Mendelssohn, 79, 155, 170, 185, 210, 252, 263, 265-6, Chap. XI. Metaphysics (in Music), 134-5, 146, 177, 182, 270

Minuet

(see

et seq.,

Dance, Scherzo), 38, 51, 60, 80, 89, 152

289-299.

et seq.

Modulation, 104.

Mozart, 32, 43, 45-6, Chap. IV., 95-6, 125, 130, 153, 178-9, 181, 185, 190, 313.

Music

(see

Art, Meaning, Symphony, Master):

limitations,

127, 310

330

345.

et seq.

t

et seq. ;

Essence, 18, 99;

power and purpose, 153

et

seq.y

National Element (in Music) (see Folk-Song), 182, 189, 209, 309,

322

et seq.y

327, 331, 341.

Opera, 127, 188, 190, 251, 262. Orchestra, 44, 349.

Overture, 349.

406

INDEX Pathos (in Music), 55, 16 1-2, 181 Poetry, 37-8, 191, 330.

Polyphony

(see Counterpoint), 48, 66, 266.

Programme Music.

(See Meaning.)

Prose (see Language), 30, 39, 127, 155, 260, 345.

Romanticism, 69, 182

et seq.

t

270

et seq.,

303, 366

et seq.

Rondo, 33, 37, 53. Scarlatti,

Domenico, 36-7

Scherzo, 50, 152

et seq.,

3

Alessandro, 36.

163, 167.

Schiller, 98, 123, 182.

Schubert, 66-7, 73, 93, 135-6, 161, 270, 352.

Schumann, 94, 126, 179, 207, 211, 217, Chaps. VIII.-IX., 68-9, 35 1 , 353Scotch Symphony, 354.

Sequence, 315-16, 345

et seq.

Sonata, 24-29, 71, and, generally, Chap. II. et seq.,

;

sonata form, 32-4, 38

53, 1035 purpose, 31, 73, 75-6.

Symphony: Purpose and Meaning

(see, also,

Meaning), Chap.

42-3, 45, 98, 101, 308-9; kinds of symphonies, 148, 310.

Thought

(in

Music), 344

et seq.

Tonality, 37, 40.

Wagner, 100, 269. Weber, 183-5, 189-90.

THE END.

407

II.,

DATE DUE

mJH

,\

fi49&

mv\



1996

~

apjrrrara APR

DEMCO,

n s ?nnfi

INC. 38-2971

HAROLD

3 1197 Utah Bookb/nd ln

B.

LEE UBRAR'

20244 6644

a Co. SLC, UT.

05 22 2000 55

Sign up to our newsletter for the latest news

© Copyright 2013 - 2019 ALLDOKUMENT.COM All rights reserved.