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Whatever happened to Mozart's symphonies #42 thru #54?

And for that matter, #37?

Sorry if this is a dumb question, I'm only now beginning to explore beyond Mozart's greatest hits.


I don't trust Wikipedia for anything, and certainly not for classical music, not after the St. Francis Mass prank that went on for more than a year.

3 Answers

  • 7 years ago
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    It's not a dumb question at all - the cataloguing and re-cataloguing of Mozart's works over the last 150 years can be a source of real confusion.

    Mozart wrote more than 50 symphonies. Some early ones have only been discovered relatively recently, while one or two were mistakenly attributed to him which were written by other composers. When Ludwig von Köchel put the original Mozart catalogue together in 1862 only 41 numbered symphonies were listed. Curiously, Köchel also listed several symphonies to which history never attached numbers. Of these numbered works, 'No 2' is actually a work by Johann Christian Bach and 'No 3' is by Carl Friedrich Abel. 'No 37' is a symphony by Michael Haydn (the 'famous' Haydn's younger brother), with only the slow introduction to the first movement being by Mozart. So, already the confusion is setting in - of the 41 numbered symphonies, Mozart only wrote 38 of them! Some (but not all) early symphonies have, rather misleadingly, been given the numbers after 42 to 55 (although this is not a universally-accepted practice), but NOT, puzzlingly, a 'No 49' or a 'No 53'. In chronological order (the original catalogue got quite a few in the wrong order!), Mozart's known symphonies are as follows:

    Symphony No 1 in E flat K 16

    Symphony in A minor K 16a (lost until 1983)

    Symphony No 4 in D K 19

    Symphony in F major K 19a (lost until 1981)

    Symphony No 5 in B flat K 22

    Symphony in D major K 32

    Symphony in G major K 45a (two versions)(Alte Lambach)

    Symphony No 6 K 43

    Symphony No 7 K 45

    Symphony No 7a K 45a

    Symphony in B flat K 45b ('No 55')

    Symphony No 8 K 48

    Symphony No 9 K 73

    Symphony in F major K 76 ('No 43')

    Symphony in D major K 81 ('No 44')

    Symphony in D major K 97 ('No 47')

    Symphony in D major K 95 ('No 45')

    Symphony No 11 K 84

    Symphony in D major K 111a

    Symphony No 10 K 74

    Symphony in B flat K Anh 216 (C11.03)('No 54')

    Symphony in F major K 75 ('No 42')

    Symphony in D major K 74a

    Symphony No 12 K 110

    Symphony in D major K 120 ('No 48')

    Symphony in C major K 96/111b ('No 46')

    Symphony No 13 K 112

    Symphony No 14 K 114

    Symphony No 15 K 124

    Symphony No 16 K 128

    Symphony No 17 K 129

    Symphony No 18 K 130

    Symphony No 19 K 132

    Symphony in D major K 167a

    Symphony No 20 K 133

    Symphony No 21 K 134

    Symphony in D major K 135

    Symphony in D major K 161/163 ('No 50')

    Symphony No 26 K 184

    Symphony No 27 K 199

    Symphony No 22 K 162

    Symphony No 23 K 181

    Symphony No 24 K 182

    Symphony No 25 K 183

    Symphony No 29 K 201

    Symphony No 30 K 202

    Symphony No 28 K 200

    Symphony in D major K 121/196 ('No 51')

    Symphony No 31 K 297 (Paris)

    Symphony in C major K 208 ('No 52')

    Symphony No 32 K 318

    Symphony No 33 K 319

    Symphony No 34 K 338

    Symphony No 35 K 385 (Haffner)

    Symphony No 36 K 425 (Linz)

    Symphony No 38 K 504 (Prague)

    Symphony No 39 K 543

    Symphony No 40 K 550

    Symphony No 41 K 551 (Jupiter)

    Curiously, there is no Symphony 'No 49' or 'No 53'!

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  • 7 years ago

    Mozart didn't write any symphonies past No.41. No.37 is K.444 and is probably not by Mozart. (As are 2 and 3). Only 39 symphonic works are confirmed as being by Mozart.

    The ones numbered above No.41 are doubtful whether they are by Mozart and a few are incomplete or spurious. See the wikipedia article:

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  • 7 years ago

    Numbers 42 and up are early works that were discovered long after the rest of the cataloging had been finished. You don't hear them much because, frankly, they're juvenile works and not that great. My local classical radio station plays one now and then.

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