Classical Music

Beethoven Enters Year 241 Of Total Awesomeness

Today is Ludwig Van Beethoven's 240th birthday. It's hard to adequately sum up the man's contribution to music because frankly no modern figure comes anywhere close. In honor of the undisputed master of all that is classical music, Rocks Off thought we'd put together some interesting tidbits about the man's life.

It's fairly well known that Beethoven began to lose his hearing at a young age. As early as 1786 he noticed some hearing loss, and by 1814 he could no longer hear music or conversation. What exactly caused his hearing loss isn't known. Some scholars think it was lead poisoning. Doctor were still using some lead-based treatments at this time, and it's also believed this might have been what finally killed Beethoven in 1827.

What's interesting about Beethoven's deafness is that he continued composing long after he ceased being able to hear his own work. In fact, at the premier of his Ninth Symphony, he had to be turned around to acknowledge the thunderous applause because he had no idea it was happening.

"I love Beethoven! Especially the poems!"

- Ringo Starr

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Jef Rouner is a contributing writer who covers politics, pop culture, social justice, video games, and online behavior. He is often a professional annoyance to the ignorant and hurtful.
Contact: Jef Rouner