Tag Archives: Age of Enlightenment

Eroica: Beethoven and Bonaparte



Ludwig von Beethoven hated despotism and desperately wanted an enlightened leader who would liberate Europe from its kings and princes.  He thought he saw such a hero in a young General Napoleon Bonaparte.  But what did Bonaparte do to deserve a symphony written in his honor?  And what did he do to cause Beethoven to strike his name from the title, and dedicate it to “the memory of a great man”?