Letter to Robert Birchall, October 1, 1816
The transcription of the text that follows preserves the scribe’s spelling and punctuation:
Addressed to: Mr. Birchall Music Seller New Bond Street No. 133 London
"My Dear Sir,
I have duly received the 5 £s. and thought previously You would not encrease the number of inglishmen neglecting their word and honor, as I had the misfortune of meeting with two of this sort. In reply to the other topics of your favor, I have no objection to write Variations according to your plan, and I hope you will not find 30 £s. too much. The accompaniment will be a flute or Violin, or a Violoncello; you’ll either decide it when you send me the approbation of the price, or you’ll leave it to me. I expect to receive the songs or poetry¾the sooner the better, and you’ll favor me also with the probable number of works of Variations you are enclined to receive of me. The sonata in G with the accompant. of a Violin is dedicated to His Imperial highness Archduke Rudolph of Austria¾it is Opa. 96. The Trio in b flat is dedicd. to the same and is Op. 97. The Piano Arrangement of the Symphony in A is dedicated to the Empress of the Russia[n]s¾meaning the wife of the Empr. Alexander¾Op. 98.
Concerning the expences of copying and packing it is not possible to fix them before hand, they are at any rate not considerable, and you’ll please to consider that you have to deal with a man of honor, who will not charge one 6d. more than he is charged for himself. Messrs. Fries & Co. will account with Messrs. Coutts & Co.¾The postage may be lessened as I have been told.¾
I offer you of my works the following new ones. A Grand Sonata for the Pianoforte alone 40 £s. A Trio for the Piano with accompt. of Violin and Violoncello for 50 £s. It is possible that somebody will offer you other works of mine to purchase, for ex. the score of the Grand Symphony in A.¾With regard to the arrangement of this Symphony for the Piano, I beg you not to forget that you are not to publish it until I have appointed the day of its publication here in Vienna. This cannot be otherwise without making myself guilty of a dishonorable act¾but the Sonata with the Violin and the Trio in B fl. may be published without any delay.
The all the new works, which you will have of me or which I offer you, it rests with you to name the day of their publication at your own choice. I entreat you to honor me as soon as possible with an answer having many order for compositions and that yours may not be delayed.
My addresse or direction is:
Monsieur Louis van Beethoven No. 1055 & 1056 Sailerstette 3d. Stock Vienna.
You may send your letter, if you please, direct
to your most humble servant Mr L
Ludwig van Beethowen"