Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-91) was born in Salzburg, the son of Leopold Mozart and Anna Maria Pertl. From the age of five he performed all over Europe with his sister, Maria-Anna.
By 1772 he had composed 25 symphonies and two string quartets. He was appointed honorary concert master to the court in Salzburg in 1774, and after more tours–to Italy, Manneheim, and Paris–and a spell as court organist in Salzburg (1778-80), he moved to Vienna in 1781. Mozart wrote most of his best work in the years that followed: 12 piano concertos (1784-86); six quartets; and the operas The Marriage of Figaro (1786), Don Giovanni (1787), and Cosi Fan Tutte (1790). In 1791, the year of the Requiem and The Magic Flute, he died of heart failure, at age 35.
This is a portion of a letter sent to his wife Constanze
Mainz October 17, 1790
PS.–while I was writing the last page, tear after tear fell on the paper. But I must cheer up — catch! — An astonishing number of kisses are flying about — The deuce!– I see a whole crowd of them! Ha! Ha!…I have just caught three– They are delicious!– You can still answer this letter, but you must address your reply to Linz, Poste Restante– That is the safest course. As I do not yet know for certain whether I shall go to Regensburg, I can’t tell you anything definite. Just write on the cover that the letter is to be kept until called for.
Adieu–Dearest, most beloved little wife– Take care of your health– and don’t think of walking into town. Do write and tell me how you like our new quarters– Adieu. I kiss you millions of times.
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