18. October 2002 – 28. February 2003
How did Ludwig van Beethoven die? How was he buried? How was he remembered? How did two exhumations of the composer come about?
On the occasion of the 175th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven's death, the Museum for Sepulchral Culture, in cooperation with the Beethoven-Haus Bonn and the Arbeitskreis selbständiger Kulturinstitute (ASKI), presents the special exhibition Three Burials and a Death - Beethoven's End and the Culture of Remembrance of his Time. On the basis of authentic documents, the last days of the great composer's life are illustrated, his death, his funeral and the cult of worship that followed, which ultimately made Beethoven immortal. The preserved material not only reflects the external environment in which Beethoven's passing away took place, but also provides insights into the inner condition of him being sick and his immediate surroundings.
The Beethoven-Haus, where the exhibition was on display until September 8, 2002, has an extensive collection of documents on the subject. Among them are medical reports, letters from and about the seriously ill composer, pictorial representations of Beethoven on the sickbed and on his deathbed, views of his death chamber, and wall and floor fragments from his apartment. Furthermore, the protocol of the autopsy and the auction of Beethoven's estate have been preserved, as well as extensive material on his funeral, such as the printed invitation to the funeral, two large-format watercolor drawings by Franz Stöber showing the funeral procession, or poems distributed at the funeral, the eulogy of Franz Grillparzer, as well as manuscripts and prints of the compositions performed at the funeral.
Arbeitsgemeinschaft Friedhof und Denkmal e.V.
Zentralinstitut für Sepulkralkultur
Museum für Sepulkralkultur
D-34117 Kassel | Germany
Tel. +49 (0)561 918 93-0