Missa in tempore belli
Missa in tempore belli is Joseph Haydn
Joseph Haydn
Franz Joseph Haydn , known as Joseph Haydn , was an Austrian composer, one of the most prolific and prominent composers of the Classical period. He is often called the "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet" because of his important contributions to these forms...

’s tenth, and one of the most popular, of his fourteen settings of the mass
Mass (music)
The Mass, a form of sacred musical composition, is a choral composition that sets the invariable portions of the Eucharistic liturgy to music...


This mass is catalogued Mass No. 10 in C major, (H.
The Hoboken-Verzeichnis is the catalogue of over 750 works by Joseph Haydn as compiled by Anthony van Hoboken.Unlike Ludwig von Köchel's catalogue of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's works, or Otto Erich Deutsch's catalogue of Franz Schubert's works, which are both arranged chronologically by date of...

 XXII:9), and is sometimes known as the Paukenmesse (English: Kettledrum Mass) due to the inclusion of the timpani
Timpani, or kettledrums, are musical instruments in the percussion family. A type of drum, they consist of a skin called a head stretched over a large bowl traditionally made of copper. They are played by striking the head with a specialized drum stick called a timpani stick or timpani mallet...

 in its orchestration
Orchestration is the study or practice of writing music for an orchestra or of adapting for orchestra music composed for another medium...

. However, the autograph
An autograph is a document transcribed entirely in the handwriting of its author, as opposed to a typeset document or one written by an amanuensis or a copyist; the meaning overlaps with that of the word holograph.Autograph also refers to a person's artistic signature...

ed manuscript
A manuscript or handwrite is written information that has been manually created by someone or some people, such as a hand-written letter, as opposed to being printed or reproduced some other way...

 contains "Missa in tempore belli" in Haydn's own handwriting, showing no doubt that this was the intended title from the beginning.


Haydn composed this mass at Eisenstadt
- Politics :The current mayor of Eisenstadt is Andrea Fraunschiel ÖVP.The district council is composed as follows :* ÖVP: 17 seats* SPÖ: 8 seats* Austrian Green Party: 2 seats* FPÖ: 2 seats- Castles and palaces :...

 in August 1796, at the time of Austria
Austria , officially the Republic of Austria , is a landlocked country of roughly 8.4 million people in Central Europe. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Slovakia and Hungary to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the...

’s general mobilisation into war. Four years into the European war that followed the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

, Austrian troops were doing badly against the French in Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 and Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, and Austria feared invasion. Reflecting the troubled mood of his time, Haydn’s potent integration of references to battle in the Benedictus and Agnus Dei movements is inspired. The Mass was first performed on December 26, 1796 in the Piarist Church of Maria Treu
Piaristenkirche Maria Treu Vienna
The Baroque Piarist Church of Maria Treu is a parish church and the church of the Order of the Piarists in Vienna. It is located in Vienna's 8th district...

 in Vienna
Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...


Haydn was a deeply religious man, who appended the words “Praise be to God” at the end of every completed score. As Kapellmeister
Kapellmeister is a German word designating a person in charge of music-making. The word is a compound, consisting of the roots Kapelle and Meister . The words Kapelle and Meister derive from the Latin: capella and magister...

 to the Prince Nikolaus II Esterházy, Haydn’s principal duty in the last period of his life beginning in 1796 was the composition of an annual mass to honour the name day of Prince Nicholas’ wife, Princess Maria Hermenegild, 8 September, the birth of the Blessed Virgin
Nativity of the Theotokos
The Nativity of the Theotokos, celebrating the birth of Mary, is one of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Eastern Orthodox liturgical year. It is celebrated on September 8 on the liturgical calendar .According to the sacred tradition of the Orthodox Church,...

. In a final flowering of his genius, he faithfully completed six magnificent masses (with increasingly larger orchestras) for this occasion. Thus Missa in Tempore Belli was performed at the family church, the Bergkirche, at Eisenstadt on September 29, 1797. Haydn also composed his oratorio The Creation around the same time and the two great works share some of his signature vitality and tone-painting.

This piece has been long thought to express an anti-war sentiment, even though there is no explicit message in the text itself, and no clear indication from Haydn that this was his intention. What is found in the score is a very unsettled nature to the music, not normally associated with Haydn, which has led scholars to the conclusion that it is anti-war in nature. This is especially noticed in the Benedictus and Agnus Dei. During the time of the composition of the Mass the Austrian government had issued a decree in 1796 that "no Austrian should speak of peace until the enemy is driven back to its customary borders." Whether this is enough to call it anti-war in nature is certainly debatable because most of the mass is of a lyrically joyful nature.

The music

The Kyrie
Kyrie, a transliteration of Greek κύριε , vocative case of κύριος , meaning "Lord", is the common name of an important prayer of Christian liturgy, which is also called the Kýrie, eléison ....

opens like a symphony
A symphony is an extended musical composition in Western classical music, scored almost always for orchestra. A symphony usually contains at least one movement or episode composed according to the sonata principle...

 in sonata form
Sonata form
Sonata form is a large-scale musical structure used widely since the middle of the 18th century . While it is typically used in the first movement of multi-movement pieces, it is sometimes used in subsequent movements as well—particularly the final movement...

, with a slow introduction before moving on to the main theme. The "Kyrie Eleison" (Lord have Mercy) part is given more importance—the "Christe Eleison" occupies just four bars.

The Gloria
Gloria in Excelsis Deo
"Gloria in excelsis Deo" is the title and beginning of a hymn known also as the Greater Doxology and the Angelic Hymn. The name is often abbreviated to Gloria in Excelsis or simply Gloria.It is an example of the psalmi idiotici "Gloria in excelsis Deo" (Latin for "Glory to God in the highest")...

is a little choral symphony in the form Vivace
Vivace is Italian for "lively" and "vivid". It is pronounced in the International Phonetic Alphabet.Vivace is used as an Italian musical term indicating a movement that is in a lively mood ....

-Adagio-Allegro (Fast-Slow-Fast). The lyrical, and deeply felt cello
The cello is a bowed string instrument with four strings tuned in perfect fifths. It is a member of the violin family of musical instruments, which also includes the violin, viola, and double bass. Old forms of the instrument in the Baroque era are baryton and viol .A person who plays a cello is...

 and baritone part in the middle section, beginning "Qui tollis peccata mundi" is especially beautiful.

The Credo
A credo |Latin]] for "I Believe") is a statement of belief, commonly used for religious belief, such as the Apostles' Creed. The term especially refers to the use of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed in the Mass, either as text, Gregorian chant, or other musical settings of the...

is divided into sections that generally reflect the text, but with Haydn's usual overriding sense of structure. At the opening, as each voice part enters with a joyous and rhythmic theme, it takes a different line of the text. The Crucifixus is set in triple meter. A truncated fugue begins at the last line, but it is interrupted midway by an elaborate coda
Coda (music)
Coda is a term used in music in a number of different senses, primarily to designate a passage that brings a piece to an end. Technically, it is an expanded cadence...

 using the solo quartet, with the chorus joining in antiphon
An antiphon in Christian music and ritual, is a "responsory" by a choir or congregation, usually in Gregorian chant, to a psalm or other text in a religious service or musical work....


The Sanctus
The Sanctus is a hymn from Christian liturgy, forming part of the Order of Mass. In Western Christianity, the Sanctus is sung as the final words of the Preface of the Eucharistic Prayer, the prayer of consecration of the bread and wine...

opens slowly, but builds to a rather ominous forte on the text "Pleni sunt coeli" before moving to a brief, more genteel "Hosanna
Hosanna is a liturgical word in Judaism and Christianity. In Judaism, it is always used in its original Hebrew form, Hoshana.- Etymology :The word hosanna is etymologically derived from the Hebrew , ...

 in Excelsis".

The In Tempore Belli first suggests itself in the Benedictus. This is set mostly in short nervous phrases for the solo quartet, with the three lower voices singing detached notes below the soprano melody reminiscent of pizzicato
Pizzicato is a playing technique that involves plucking the strings of a string instrument. The exact technique varies somewhat depending on the type of stringed instrument....


The sense of anxiety and foreboding continues with ominous drumbeats and wind fanfares in the Agnus Dei, which opens with minor-key timpani strokes (hence the German nickname, Paukenmesse), perhaps fate itself, knocking seemingly from the depths. This foreshadows the timpani-catalysed drama of the Agnus Dei in Beethoven's Missa Solemnis
Missa Solemnis (Beethoven)
The Missa solemnis in D Major, Op. 123 was composed by Ludwig van Beethoven from 1819-1823. It was first performed on April 7, 1824 in St. Petersburg, under the auspices of Beethoven's patron Prince Nikolai Galitzin; an incomplete performance was given in Vienna on 7 May 1824, when the Kyrie,...

. The music brightens with trumpet fanfares, ending with an almost dance-like entreaty and celebration of peace, "Dona nobis pacem
Dona nobis pacem
Dona nobis pacem is a phrase in the Agnus Dei section of the Roman Catholic mass. The phrase, in isolation, has been appropriated for a number of works, which include:* Dona nobis pacem, a traditional canon...

" (Give us peace).
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