Beethoven's Deafness in Contemporary Sources: an anthology

Edited by Neville P. Churchill

A compilation, certainly incomplete, in English of references to Beethoven’s deafness in contemporary and near-contemporary sources and by those who knew or met him. Where the original text is given in the Notes the translation is my own.

The contemporary sources – both those written during Beethoven’s lifetime and those written later by those who knew or met him – suggest that Beethoven’s deafness was progressive; that it had advanced to the point where it started to cause him problems, and where it became evident to all, only after 1810; and that he retained a slight degree of hearing in his left ear to the last year of his life.