Books and Journals at the Beethoven Center

The Center collects books on Beethoven in many different languages, including biographies and scholarly monographs; collections of essays, conference papers, and Festschriften; master's theses and doctoral dissertations; fiction, drama, and poetry; children's books; and much more.

Rare books include the 1783 issue of Cramer's Magazin der Musik that contains the first mention of Beethoven in print and other early biographies, such as the Biographische Notizen über Ludwig van Beethoven by F.G. Wegeler and Ferdinand Ries (1838) and the biography by Johann Aloys Schlosser (1828) that contains one of the first facsimiles of a Beethoven manuscript.

                       Magazin der Musik                    Biographische Notizen uber Ludwig van Beethoven


The rare collection also contains editions of books that Beethoven read, including:


Ideen zu einer Astheik der Tunkunst

 Christian Friedrich Schubart's Ideen zu einer Ästhetik der Tunkunst (1806)

Allgemeine Theorie der schonen Kunste

Johann Georg Sulzer's Allgemeine Theorie der schönen Künste (1798)

Betrachtungen uber die Werke Gottes im Reiche der Natur

Christoph Christian Sturm's Betrachtungen über die Werke Gottes im Reiche der Natur (1797, and an English translation from 1800).


Notice sur le metronome

J.N. Maelzel's Notice sur le metronome that was printed in Paris in 1818. 

Visitors are welcome to browse the books in the Center's reading room, which currently houses over 4,000 volumes. Donations of Beethoven books are always welcome; duplicates may be sold to help support the Center. Nearly all of the Center's books are listed in the Beethoven Gateway.

Periodicals and Journal Articles

Files in the Center's reading room currently contain photocopies of more than 8,000 articles on Beethoven published in both music and non-music journals. Arranged alphabetically by author, these files continue to grow daily as we collect and index articles for the Beethoven Gateway. The Center also owns complete runs of Beethoven series such as the ceased titles, Beethoven-Jahrbuch (1953-1981) and Neues Beethoven Jahrbuch (1924-1939), and more recent publications, Beethoven Forum, the Bonner Beethoven Studien, and The Beethoven Journal. Individual essays, reviews, and bibliographies published in these series are indexed in the Beethoven Gateway.