Heartwarming / Joseph Haydn

  • Haydn was a warm-hearted fellow generally, but he delivered a triple-headed crowning moment in his tribute to Mozart. He and Mozart were good friends, although Mozart was nearly 25 years younger, and they admired each other's music greatly. One genre which Haydn had mastered and Mozart hadn't was the string quartet, so after deep study of Haydn's quartets, Mozart sat down in 1785 and wrote a set of six quartets — the greatest he'd ever written, or ever would write — and dedicated them to Haydn. Haydn attended a party that year at which Mozart and some others were playing the quartets, when he turned to Mozart's father Leopold (who he may or may not have known was Mozart's "Well Done, Son!" Guy) and said:
    Haydn: Before God and as an honest man I tell you that your son is the greatest composer known to me either in person or by name; he has taste, and, furthermore, the most profound knowledge of composition.