Romantic music is a term denoting an era of Western classical music that began in the late 18th or early 19th century. It was related to Romanticism, the European artistic and literary movement that arose in the second half of the 18th century, and Romantic music in particular dominated the Romantic movement in Germany.
The Romantic movement was an artistic, literary, and intellectual movement that originated in the second half of the 18th century in Europe and strengthened in reaction to the Industrial Revolution. In part, it was a revolt against social and political norms of the Age of Enlightenment and a reaction against the scientific rationalization of nature. It was embodied most strongly in the visual arts, music, and literature, but had a major impact on historiography, education, and natural history.
One of the first significant applications of the term to music was in 1789, in the Mémoires by the Frenchman André Grétry, but it was E.T.A. Hoffmann who really established the principles of musical romanticism, in a lengthy review of Ludwig van Beethoven's Fifth Symphony published in 1810, and in an 1813 article on Beethoven's instrumental music. In the first of these essays Hoffmann traced the beginnings of musical Romanticism to the later works of Haydn and Mozart. It was Hoffmann's fusion of ideas already associated with the term "Romantic", used in opposition to the restraint and formality of Classical models, that elevated music, and especially instrumental music, to a position of pre-eminence in Romanticism as the art most suited to the expression of emotions. It was also through the writings of Hoffmann and other German authors that brought German music to the centre of musical Romanticism.
Well-known Romantic Period composers include: Ludwig van Beethoven, Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Niccolò Paganini, Friedrich Kuhlau, Carl Maria von Weber, Gioachino Rossini, Gaetano Donizetti, Franz Schubert, Hector Berlioz, Johann Strauss (both I & II), Felix Mendehssohn, Frédéric Chopin, Robert Schumann, Franz Liszt, Richard Wagner, Giuseppe Verdi, Charles Gounod, Jacques Offenbach, César Franck, Anton Bruckner, Bedrich Smetana, Alexander Borodin, Anton Rubinstein, Johannes Brahms, Camille Saint-Saëns, Georges Bizet, Max Bruch, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Antonín Dvorák, Arthur Sullivan, Edvard Grieg, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Gabriel Fauré, John Philip Sousa, Edward Elgar, and Giacomo Puccini.
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