Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Photo of Mozart's widow found

By Aussiegirl

How fascinating old photographs are -- the veil of the past is briefly parted and we see people captured in an instant of their being alive.
Here is a description of the daguerreotype from the ever-useful Wikipedia: The daguerreotype is one of the earliest types of photograph in which the image is exposed directly onto a mirror-polished surface of silver bearing a coating of silver halide particles deposited by iodine vapor. In later developments bromine and chlorine vapors were also utilized, resulting in shorter exposure times. Unlike later photographic processes that supplanted it, the daguerreotype is a direct positive image making process with no "negative" original.

BBC NEWS | Europe | Photo of Mozart's widow found

A print of the only photograph of Mozart's widow, Constanze Weber, has been found in Germany.
The photograph was taken in 1840 in the Bavarian town of Altoetting when she was 78. She died two years later.

The local authorities say detailed examination has proved the authenticity of the image, which is a copy of the original daguerreotype.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died at the age of 36 in 1791, when Constanze was 29. She later married a Danish diplomat.

The print is one of the earliest examples of photography in Bavaria. It was found in the town archives.

The daguerreotype was taken at the home of the Swiss composer Max Keller, whom Constanze used to visit regularly.

Mozart and Constanze had six children in their nine-year marriage. Only two of them survived past childhood.

The daguerreotype shows Constanze at front left, next to Max Keller. His wife Josefa is on the right. Behind them are (from the right): their daughters Josefa and Luise, Max Keller's brother-in-law Philipp Lattner and the family's cook. They are outside the Keller family's house.


At 10:15 PM, Anonymous Bruce Wayne said...

Looks like some of my old family photos, perhaps I am kin to Mozart. Seriously, I am an old fellow and have spent untold hours scanning old family photos and burning to CD to have my life on one CD when I'm too old to get around. A word of wisdom---take time to shoot pictures in black and white as your family goes thru the years--they seem to last forever if stored properly while color photos degrade rapidly. Some B&W are over 100 years old and still look good.


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