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Asked • 07/05/19

Could Thomas Jefferson have ever heard Mozart's Symphony No. 40, KV. 550?

I've been reading some of Jefferson's writing on music theory, and given his perspective and his love for Mozart's music, I think the [Symphony No. 40, KV. 550] would be so astounding to him—particularly in its use of modulation—that he would have _had_ to write about it if he'd heard it—but the contemporaneous naming conventions (or lack thereof) make it difficult to search online archives of his writing for such mention. It seems that Jefferson almost certainly could not have heard the work performed in concert while he was in Europe. But could he have ever heard it in America?

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