The contributions of the Enlightenment crystallized around such figures as Buffon, Voltaire, Diderot, and d’Alembert in French, and Kant and Lessing in German. The English novel also cuts a fine figure in this era, from Defoe and Richardson to Swift, Fielding, and Sterne. And the dawn of a new age comes into sharper focus in the work of Montesquieu and Rousseau. The Bodmer Collection also boasts a rich selection of items in terms of the period’s music, with a unique piece like the autograph score of the String Quintet No. 5 in D Major KV 593 by Mozart. The entire Bodmer Collection, however, gravitates around Goethe, from original editions of his works to sheaves of pages from Faust written in the author’s hand.
String Quintet No. 5 in D Major
Autograph score (KV 593), 1790
Mozart wrote his String Quintet No. 5 in D Major (KV 593) in the last year of his life. The autograph manuscript of the work is exceptional. The clearly hurried sequence of pen strokes, the few corrections, the presence of two different colors of ink, such details reveal to the viewer the creative power of the composer. And there is this extraordinary fact among Mozart’s works, the first edition of the Quintet No. 5, posthumously published, would offer a modified version of the finale’s overture.