Beethoven’s library and love of literature

Beethoven’s library and love of literature.

This is a companion post to an earlier one about Beethoven and Philosophy. In the excellent article on : “Nietzsche and Beethoven, Tracing Beethoven’s Relationship to Literature and Philosophy,” the writer begins by examining Beethoven’s “Heiligenstadt Testament”  written in October 1802, where he makes a reference to being “forced” at age 28 “to become a philosopher.”

Beethoven testament

Here is the full text in English:

Here is the article which examines Beethoven’s literary interests, authors he admired such as Goethe and Schiller, and discusses what books he had in his library, which was very extensive- some 200- 300 books!

Ludwig lush2

Beethoven as he was around the time he wrote the “Heiligenstadt     Testament.”

Reconstruction of Beethoven’s Library at Beethoven- Haus Bonn:

You can help build up his library by adopting a book!

Below are photographs of some of Ludwig’s books. It is fascinating to see his annotations:



three(Picture credits: Hans Conrad Fischer, 1970)


2 thoughts on “Beethoven’s library and love of literature

  1. Wow thank you Edwardianpiano, I’ve been looking for copies for books from Beethoven’s personal library everywhere on the internet, may I share some of the pictures and this page. I do hope you shall not be leaving us at wordpress, if you do decide to use a different platform could you tell us which one, so we can continue to follow your blog.

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