HAYDN, FRANZ JOSEPH. (1732-1809). Austrian composer of symphonies, chamber works, oratorios and masses; one of the world’s greatest composers. LS. (“Joseph Haydn”). 2pp. 4to. Vienna, April 7, 1808. To the Academic Society of the Children of Apollo. In French with translation.
“The choice, which the Société Académique des Enfants d’Apollon has deigned to make in inscribing my name on the list of its members has so flattered me that it has filled me with the keenest emotion. In assuring it through your agent that it could not have honored anyone better able to appreciate its esteem, and more able to feel the value of the honor which arises from it, I beg of you, Messieurs, to allow my feelings to be made clear by your own, and at the same time to be the interpreters of my gratitude for the marks of distinction which you have transmitted to me by the sending of a copy of the statutes and regulations, accompanied by a gold medal.
You have scattered, Messieurs, a few flowers on the road of life which still is left to me to travel. I am profoundly touched by it, and I feel very strongly, that though old age can well enfeeble the faculties, that it does not affect the emotions at all for it is that which makes me regret that my great age prevents me from nourishing the hope of seeing myself among you, to share in your labors, to cooperate in the cultivation of an art which is the charm of the Society and to participate in the celebrity in whose titles, so dear and so precious, the Academy rejoices.