Sunday, May 5, 2019

Jean-Frédéric Edelmann - Piano Quartet in D major

The French Revolution was much more radical than the American Revolution, even though it came only 15 years later.  Doubtless this was due to the difference between the pragmatic American approach compared to the French tendency to enshrine philosophy.  The Cathedral of Notre Dame was rededicated as the Temple of Reason, after all.  The Revolution tapped a lot of intellectuals to help run the Revolution, before it devoured them during the reign of terror.

Jean-Frédéric Edelmann was one of those.  Born in the Alsace, he taught piano and made a living composing and performing.  He became prominent enough that he joined the Jacobin club and was appointed to be administrator of the new Department of Bas-Rhin.  Kind of an intellectual big shot.

Alas, that proved to be his undoing.  Robespierre descended into paranoia and pulled the rest of the government with him.  Edelmann was in the wrong clique and found himself denounced and arrested.  A few days after Bastille Day in 1794 the tumbrel came to take him on his date with Madame Guillotine.

Jean-Frédéric Edelmann was born on this day in 1749.


libertyman said...

A very nice piece from someone new to me, and I suspect, a lot of others.

Too bad his career was "cut short" by the Guillotine.

HMS Defiant said...

It takes a second to realize she is never going to glance over at you.