Pietro Metastasio

Pietro Metastasio

Pietro Trapassi (13. Jänner 1698; † 12. April 1782) was an Italian poet and dear savingist, better admits under its alias Antonio Pietro Metastasio.

It was born in Rome, where its father, Felice Trapassi, born in Assisi, had a place in the Korsi regiment of the papal troops. Felice married Francesca Galasti from Bologna, and was established as a costermonger in the via dei Cappellari. From this marriage two sons and two daughters followed. The oldest son, Leopoldo, played an important role in the life of the poet.

Table of contents

childhood and youth

already as a child tightened Pietro people masses, when it spoke spontaneously poems. When it rezitierte a daily 1709 again once poems, two men stopped, in order to listen to it. One of them was Giovanni Vincenzo Gravina, famous for its legal and literary education. It had also the presidency in „the Accademia dell'Arcadia “. The second man was Lorenzini, an important critic. Gravina was inspired by the charm and talent of the small Pietro, and made the boys its “protege”. In the run fewer weeks Pietro of Gravina was adopted. Felice Trapassi agreed very with since with the adoption the chance of good training and a social ascent for the boy resulted.

Gravina gave also its artist name “Metastasio” to the boy (of the Greek Metastase, to German: Shift, change) and planned to train it as the lawyer. Therefore it informed it in latin and right. At the same time it promoted its literary talent and introduced his favorite to the Roman society. Metastasio began already soon against the most famous standing grab poets („Improvisatori “) of Italy. But arduous learning during the day as well as the Dichtkunst of competitions of the evening attacked its health. Sometimes with the abendlichen competitions, up to 80 Strophen were improvised. Gravina had to travel vocationally after Kalabrien and took Metastasio with itself. It introduced it to the literary circles Neapels and entrusted it its friend Gregorio Caroprese in Scaléa. By the fresh air of the rural area and the peace of the sea Metastasio came again to forces. Gravina decided the fact that Metastasio do not improvise any longer but its forces for more ambitious goals to use should: only after the conclusion of its training it should begin again against large poets.

Metastasio added itself the desires of its Mentors. In the age of twelve years it translated the Ilias into stamping machines, two years later wrote it a tragedy in the style of Seneca over the material from Trissino's Italia liberata - Gravinas favourite pos. It called it Giustino. Gravina let it publish 1713, but the piece was liveless and artistically insignificant. Later Metastasio its publisher, Calsabigi asked forty-two years, to hold it under catch. Caroprese, the friend Gravinas from Scalea, died 1714, and used Gravina as sole heir. When 1718 also Gravina died, Metastasio inherited a fortune of 15,000 Scudi. With a meeting of the “Accademia dell'Arcadia”, he spoke a Elegie on his Mentor and pulled themselves back around its prosperity to then enjoy.

Metastasios life and working in Italy

Metastasio was now twenty years old. While the last four years carried it the clothes of an abbott, after it had put the small Gelübde down, to make without it was impossible, in Rome career. Its romantic history, its charismatische feature, its charming manners and its unusual talent, made it famous. After two further years it had spent its money and had increased its status. Now it decided seriously to secure with its vocational abilities its getting along. In Neapel it accepted a place with a famous lawyer named Castagnola, which had diktatorisch Metastasios time and energy.

As a slave of its work giver, Metastasio wrote 1721 a Epithalamium (wedding poem), and probably also its first musical serenade with the name Endimione. It wrote it for the wedding of his protection lady princess Pinelli di Sangro with the Mark count Belmonte Pignatelli. 1722 were particularly celebrated the birthday of the empress pompös. The ceremony leader turned to Metastasio and gave him the order to write a serenade for the celebration. It accepted the order, however not as an author of the work was called. Under these conditions Metastasio Gli wrote orti esperidi („the gardens of the Hesperiden “). The music in addition was composed by Nicola Porpora and sung of Porporas pupil, the Kastraten Farinelli. It was a spectacular debut with raving applause. The large Roman Diva, Marianna Bulgarelli, after its place of birth “La Romanina” (“the Roman”) mentioned, which played the Venus in the piece.

`La Romanina' persuaded the poet to give the jurisprudence up and promised it to provide for its celebrity and independence should it the work on its musical dramas resume. In La Romanina's house he became acquainted with the largest composers of his days, as for example Porpora, from which he got music instruction. Hate, Pergolese, Alessandro Scarlatti, Vinci, Leo, Durante, and Marcello - it all toned later its pieces. Here he learned the art of singing, and learned the singing style of the kind of a Farinelli to estimate. Presented with an extraordinary gift for composing and a feeling for the poetic he did not feel anything difficult at the letter of pieces. The pieces of no literary masterpieces, but as soon as they were toned, developed true masterpieces and the best singers tore themselves to be allowed to speak the works. The actions of its pieces are banal. The situations absurdly, he does gladly force to the main characters and the dear topic constantly repeats himself in all his phases. All this is only explained and justified by the music.

Metastasio lived with La Romanina and their man in Rome. Moved of actual admiration of its talent, it adopted it with still larger passion than Gravina it had done. It accepted the whole family Trapassi - father, nut/mother, brother and sisters - to its house. It strengthened the genius of the poet and fulfilled to it all special wishes. Under its influence it wrote Catone in fast succession Didone abbandonata , in Utica, Ezio, Alessandro nell' Indie, Semiramide riconosciuta, Siroe and Artaserse. These dramas were toned by the then most famous composers and specified in all large cities.

In the meantime La Romanina ever older and had stopped singing public. The poet felt it obligated from gratitude ever more. He received 300 Scudi for each opera. This fee was very good, but Metastasio had the need after a fixed employment, which would give him a certain security.

Metastasio at the Viennese yard

September 1729 he got an offer as Hofdramaturg, at theatre in Vienna. The offer covered a scholarship of 3000 Florins. It accepted the offer immediately. La Romanina let it go and worried further selbstlos about its family.

In the early summer 1730 Metastasio arrived at Vienna. He rented himself into the house of a Spanish Neapolitaners, Niccolo Martinez, in and remained there up to its death. With this year a completely new period in the work Metastasios began. Between 1730 and 1740 its best dramas for the imperial yard theatre were toned and specified: Adriano, Demetrio, Issipile, Demofoonte, Olimpiade, Clemenza di Tito, Achille in Sciro, Temistocle and Attilio Regolo Some of it for special causes, in crazy speed were written: The Achille in eighteen days, the Ipermestra in nine. More closely, composers, note printers and singers did their work in unbelievable hurry. Metastasio controlled the technology of its art into the smallest detail. The experience, which he had gained in Neapel and Rome, as well as the enthusiasm of the Viennese for its work, accelerated its career. It created it instinktiv to obtain the statements of its operas point-exactly the spectators.

The restored interior coffin Metastasios, to see in Vienna, Michaelerkirche, in the background one sees erasures of Herwig Zens.

In Vienna Metastasio did not make a special social career. Its low origin excluded it from aristokratischen circles. In order to make this disadvantage, it died an intimate relationship with Baronin Althann, which was the sister-in-law of his earlier Gönnerin, princess Belmonte Pignatelli. It had lost its man and had been for a while Mätresse of the emperor. Metastasio's relationship with their was that one even believed, it secretly would so intensively have married.

La Romanina had become the long absence Metastasios tiredly and asked it to arrange for it a commitment at the Viennese yard theatre. He was ashamed however for it and was their tired. Therefore it wrote it, it might have refrained from this project. The kind, as the letter was written, made it furious and irritated it. It had made apparent already on the way, died themselves however suddenly during the journey. Everything which one over the fact is white that Metastasio was used as sole heir La Romaninas and it had not bequeathed anything to its man. Metastasio was in such a way overwhelmed by their sudden death and full regret that he did without his legal claim. This decision created much confusion between the families Metastasio - Bulgarelli. La Romaninas widower married a second time. The family of Leopoldo Trapassi, its sister and its father had to provide again even for its sufficiency.

The life, the Metastasio in Vienna led and also the climate, gnawed at the health of the poet. Approximately starting from the year 1745 it wrote only few. The Kantaten belonged nevertheless from this period came, as well as the Kanzonette Ecco quel fiero istante, which he had sent to its friend Farinelli, to most popular its productions of that time. It was clear, as Vernon Lee said that “which propelled him mental and moral boredom was”. 1755 died Baronin Althann and Metastasio limited its social activities only to the visitors of its house. He got accustomed to the problems, which the age brings with itself and although it only 1782 died, lived it already very withdrawn and was a little productively. It bequeathed its entire fortune at a value of 130,000 Florins to the five children of its friend Martinez. It survived all its Italian relatives.

While those 40 years, in which Metastasio had survived its own creativity and productivity, its fame from year grew more to year. In its library it had 40 expenditures of its own works. They had been translated in the French, English, German, Spanish and even into the newGreek. They were toned again and again by famous composers. Each opera was taken up with enthusiasm to highest social one circles. They were sung by the largest Virtuosen in each capital and it were member of each considerable literary academy. Famous foreigner, which came by Vienna, zollten it tribute, by visiting it in its dwelling at the Kohl market.

1782 it died after long, serious illness. He was buried in a funeral of first class in the Viennese Michaelerkirche, where he lies until today and can in the there Gruft be visited. Due to the restoration one knows its Sarges, on the occasion of the renovation of the Gruft, that Metastasio installation as revision modification ore is.


its works were for a certain kind of music intended - for the music of extremely virtuosen singers, under other one also Kastraten. With the opera reform, which was introduced by luck and Mozart, with employment of enormous orchestras and fast clocks of the German compositions, a new type was in demand by Libretti. Metastasios of pieces came into oblivion, as well as the music, which toned them. Farinelli, which he called twin brother, was the true image of its poetry. With the abolishment of the Kastraten also Metastasios music became uninteresting. The designation Farinellis as a twin brother had a purely symbolic character.

The Libretti, the Metastasio wrote and the genius, who was he, is today hardly understandable, so that it is heavy to assign him its correct place as poets in Italian literature history. Its main dramaturgy consists of the text of two to three characters, which - led of their passions - come into conflicts. The result of its work is not pure seal, but seal, which is emphasized by music. In Metastasios hands language is unbelievably pure and simple.

Among the Italian poet colleagues it admired above all Tasso and Giambattista Marini. He avoided however contacts with the latter and he was not very talented to copy the seal of its Idols. Its own style reveals the face of an improvising poet. Among latin the poets he liked Ovid dearest. By this preference can be also deduced some its works. However it possessed the ability the sweet one of feelings to transfer the romantic situations with a large ease into the language and makes singular it for the Italian literature.

There are today countless expenditures of Metastasios works. That one of Calsabigi (Paris, 1755, 5 vols. 8vo) was published under its administration and was its personal favorite. The posthumen work was printed 1795 in Vienna. The life Metastasios became of Aluigi (Assisi, 1783), Charles Burney (London, 1796) and many different written down and than book published.


  • Pietro Metastasio: Uomo universal (1698-1782). Commemorative volume of the Austrian Academy of Sciences to 300. Birthday of Pietro Metastasio, TB, ISBN: 370012886X
  • Metastasio in the Germany of the clearing-up of Laurenz Lütteken and Gerhard split, 2002, paperback, ISBN: 3484175281

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Wikisource: Author: Pietro Metastasio - source texts


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