HAYDN: Online Journal of the Haydn Society of North America


Bertil van Boer

Document Type

Book Review


The use of minor keys in the eighteenth century has always presented us with some interesting and sometimes difficult terminological issues. While one often considers the “Classical” period one where formal construction and musical symmetry were the compositional criteria of the day, particularly in genres that rose to become of enormous, even global popularity, such as the symphony, it is clear that other stylistic developments of a more changeable nature were underway, some of which ran contrary to this idea of symmetrical form and structure. In our concert world today, for example, our notion of the symphony continually reflects the works of Mozart, Haydn, and (of course, later on) Beethoven, although it is also true that more and more works by others from that era are coming to light that are both revising our knowledge of its development and the context within which the works of these three composers were created.