Ludwig van Beethoven
Beethoven was born in Bonn in 1770 and was not noble, as many would conclude based on his name. The van is a Dutch name suffix that indicates the person’s origin. Nevertheless, Beethoven always felt he was of noble descent throughout his life. That Beethoven, despite his German origins, is often treated as a “Viennese composer” is probably due to the fact that he wrote most of his compositions including 9 symphonies, 32 piano sonatas, 5 piano concertos, 16 string quartets, a violin concerto and the Great Fugue in Vienna. He lived here from 1792 and initially took lessons from Hayden, with whom, however, there were repeated disagreements. As early as 1798, the first symptoms of a hearing disorder appeared, which in the following years was to lead almost to complete deafness and plunged Beethoven into a serious crisis. Nevertheless, he continued to compose until his death in 1827, and his grave can be found in Vienna’s Central Cemetery, with monuments both at Beethovenplatz and in Währing, where he was originally buried next to Franz Schubert.