A CHRONOLOGICAL VIEW OF WESTERN MUSIC HISTORY IN THE CONTEXT OF WORLD EVENTS

January 1, 1778 – December 31, 1778

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January 1, 1778: When rival nations great in arms, an ode by William Boyce (66) to words of Whitehead, is performed for the first time, in the Great Council Chamber of St. James’ Palace, London.
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January 2, 1778: Der Holzhauer, oder Die drey Wünsche, a comische Operette by Georg Benda (55) to words of Gotter and von Wulff after Guichard and Castet, is performed for the first time, in Gotha.
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January 3, 1778: Karl Theodor, Elector Palatine and Elector of Bavaria recognizes Austria’s claim to Lower Bavaria. Austrian troops will enter the country within two weeks.
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January 8, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The French government informs Benjamin Franklin in Paris that they agree to an alliance and recognition of the United States should there be war between France and Great Britain.
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January 10, 1778: Carolus Linnaeus dies in Uppsala at the age of 70.
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January 14, 1778: After several public discourtesies towards him, Vice-Kapellmeister Georg Joseph Vogler (28) calls on the visiting Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (21) in Mannheim. Mozart has been indiscreetly contemptuous towards Vogler.
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January 17, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (21) first mentions Aloysia Weber in a letter.
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January 18, 1778: Captain James Cook first sights the Hawaiian Islands, naming them the Sandwich Islands, after the First Lord of the Admiralty.
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January 23, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (21) travels without his mother from Mannheim to Kirchheimbolanden in the company of Fridolin Weber and his daughter Aloysia. They will spend several days at the court of Princess Caroline van Nassau-Weilburg where Aloysia sings and Mozart plays.
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January 27, 1778: Roland, a tragédie lyrique by Niccolò Piccinni (50) to words of Marmontel after Quinault, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Opéra. It is Piccinni’s first French opera. The rehearsals were so horrendous that Piccinni has made plans to leave for Naples tomorrow. As it turns out, the performance, attended by Queen Marie Antoinette, is a success. Reviews are generally positive.
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January 27, 1778: War of the American Revolution: American forces capture forts overlooking New Providence (Nassau), Bahamas.
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January 29, 1778: Evelina, a novel by Frances Burney, is published in London.
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January 29, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) arrives at Worms with the Webers.
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February 2, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) and the Webers return to Mannheim from Worms.
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February 6, 1778: Achille in Sciro, a dramma per musica by Giovanni Paisiello (37) to words of Metastasio, is performed for the first time, at the Russian Court, St. Petersburg.
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February 6, 1778: War of the American Revolution: In the Foreign Ministry in the Hôtel de Lautrec, France, represented by the Comte de Vergennes, signs a treaty of aid and commerce, and an alliance with the United States, represented by Benjamin Franklin, Silas Deane, and Arthur Lee. It is the first international treaty signed by representatives of the United States.
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February 7, 1778: Erifile, an opera seria by Antonio Sacchini (47) to words of De Gamerra, is performed for the first time, in King’s Theatre, London.
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February 14, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to his father about a commission he has received for flute music, “...you know that I become quite powerless whenever I am obliged to write for an instrument which I cannot bear. Hence as a diversion I compose something else, such as duets for clavier and violin, or I work at my mass.” (Marshall, 62)
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February 16, 1778: An untitled intermezzo by Luigi Cherubini (17) is performed for the first time, in Teatro di Serviti, Florence.
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February 17, 1778: The first performance of a singspiel by a local composer takes place in Vienna. It is Ignaz Umlauf’s Die Bergknappen which is afforded a warm reception. The production is a result of a major reorganization of Viennese opera in favor of Germanic composers. See 2 March 1778.
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February 17, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Lord North introduces bills in Parliament to reconcile Great Britain to its North American colonies. Horace Walpole calls the speech North’s “confession and humiliation.” It is short on specifics but does appear to give up Parliament’s claim to legislate for the colonies in all circumstances. He is also willing to restore the charter of Massachusetts.
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February 23, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Friedrich Wilhelm Augustus von Steuben arrives at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania to begin training the United States Army. For the miracle he performs, he will be created Inspector General.
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March 1, 1778: Christoph Willibald Gluck (63) arrives back in Vienna from Paris.
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March 2, 1778: The opera buffa troupe resident at the Nationaltheater, Vienna gives its last performance. It will disband during Lent. See 17 February 1778.
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March 5, 1778: 20:00 Thomas Augustine Arne dies in his house in Bow Street, Covent Garden, London, United Kingdom, of a “spasmodic complaint”, 67 years, eleven months, and 21 days after his baptism. He remained a Roman Catholic to the end.
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March 7, 1778: During an engagement with HMS Yarmouth off Barbados, the magazine of USS Randolph explodes. She goes down with 311 hands. Only four survive.
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March 9, 1778: The demand of King Friedrich II of Prussia that Austria return Bavaria to the status quo reaches Emperor Joseph II in Austria.
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March 11, 1778: Spain and Portugal conclude a peace agreement at Pardo.
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March 11, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) dates his Duet Sonata for violin and piano K.296 in Mannheim.
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March 13, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The French government formally informs Great Britain that it has recognized the United States of America and concluded treaties with them.
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March 14, 1778: Houdon’s bust of Christoph Willibald Gluck (63) is placed in the Paris Opéra, next to those of Jean-Baptiste Lully (†90) and Jean-Philippe Rameau (†13).
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March 14, 1778: After four-and-a-half months, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) and his mother depart Mannheim for Paris.
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March 15, 1778: The mortal remains of Thomas Augustine Arne are laid to rest in a Roman Catholic ceremony in the churchyard of St. Paul’s, Covent Garden.
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March 15, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Two days after being informed of the French treaties with the United States, the British ambassador withdraws from Versailles.
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March 16, 1778: Voltaire’s tragedy Irène is produced at the Théâtre-Français, Paris. The 84-year-old philosopher is present, having returned last month from an exile of 27 years.
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March 16, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The British Parliament adopts Lord North’s plans for reconciliation with the colonies.
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March 17, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Great Britain declares war on France.
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March 18, 1778: Prussia and Saxony conclude an alliance against Austria.
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March 20, 1778: Georg Benda (55) resigns as Kapelldirector to Duke Ernst II of Saxe-Gotha.
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March 20, 1778: War of the American Revolution: King Louis XVI of France receives Benjamin Franklin, Silas Deane, and Arthur Lee at Versailles as representatives of an equal, sister nation. Unlike his two companions, Franklin dresses plainly, without sword or wig. The treaties of 6 February are made public. The Comte de Vergennes gives a dinner in the afternoon for the American commissioners, attended by Queen Marie Antoinette. Unlike her countrymen, the Queen is not impressed by a former “printer’s foreman.”
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March 22, 1778: An Ottoman naval attack on Russian occupiers of Akhtiar, Crimea, is repulsed by shore batteries.
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March 23, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) and his mother arrive in Paris from Mannheim.
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March 26, 1778: Ludwig van Beethoven (7) appears in concert for the first time, with his father and another child-student of his father, in the Academy Room on the Sternengaße, Cologne.
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March 28, 1778: Le jugement de Midas, an opéra-comique by André-Ernest-Modeste Grétry (37) to words of d’Hèle after O’Hara, is performed for the first time, in the apartments of Mme de Montesson in the Palais-Royal, Paris. See 27 June 1778.
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March 30, 1778: During a performance of his play Irène at the Théâtre Français in Paris, Voltaire and his bust are crowned with laurel wreaths.
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April 4, 1778: La Clemenza di Scipione, an opera seria by Johann Christian Bach (42) to words of an unknown author, is performed for the first time, in King’s Theatre, London.
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April 5, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) reports to his father from Paris that François Joseph Gossec (44) has been saying nice things about his music.
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April 7, 1778: In the middle of a speech in the House of Lords, in which he calls for conciliation with the American colonies, but not independence, former Prime Minister William Pitt, Earl of Chatham, collapses. He will die within a month.
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April 8, 1778: Antonio Salieri (27) departs Vienna to return to Italy for the first time in twelve years.
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April 8, 1778: War of the American Revolution: John Adams arrives in Paris replacing Silas Deane in the United States mission.
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April 22, 1778: War of the American Revolution: 40 men from USS Ranger under John Paul Jones raid Whitehaven, Cumbria, England spiking the guns of two forts and setting three ships on fire. It is the first wartime raid on Great Britain in 111 years.
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April 24, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Off Carrickfergus, Ireland, USS Ranger captures HMS Drake.
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May 1, 1778: The mother of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes home from Paris that she has had a toothache, sore throat and an earache for three weeks.
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May 4, 1778: L’amore soldato, a dramma giocoso by Antonio Sacchini (47) to words of Andrei after Tassi, is performed for the first time, in King’s Theatre, London.
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May 9, 1778: War of the American Revolution: At Valley Forge, General Washington includes this in his general orders for the day, “The use of drums are as signals to the army and, if every drummer is allowed to beat at his pleasure, the intention is entirely destroy[e]d, as it will be impossible to distinguish whether they are beating for their own pleasure or for a signal to the troops.” (Chernow, 293)
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May 11, 1778: William Pitt, Earl of Chatham dies in Hayes, Kent at the age of 60.
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May 12, 1778: The County of Reuss-Greiz becomes the Principality of Reuss-Greiz.
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May 14, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes from Paris that he has been offered the post of organist at Versailles.
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May 17, 1778: Christian Gottlob Neefe (30) marries the singer and actress Suzanne Zinck in Frankfurt. She is the adopted daughter of Georg Benda (55).
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May 20, 1778: Rinaldo ed Armida, a cantata by Johann Christian Bach (42), is performed for the first time, in Hanover Square Rooms, London.
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May 26, 1778: Thomas-Arthur, comte de Lally is formally vindicated by the French government twelve years after he was executed for the loss of Pondicherry. This act comes about largely through the efforts of Voltaire, who is presently near death.
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May 26, 1778: La fête de village, an intermezzo by François-Joseph Gossec (44) to words of Desfontaines, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Opéra.
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May 30, 1778: Voltaire (François-Marie Arouet) dies in Paris at the age of 83. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) will write to his father from Paris, “That godless, archvillain Voltaire has pegged out like a dog, like an animal--that’s his reward.” (Abert 510)
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June 3, 1778: King George III assents to the Catholic Relief Act for England. Catholics may now buy and inherit land legally. No longer are priests liable to arrest on the word of a common informer.
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June 4, 1778: Arm’d with her native force, an ode by William Boyce (66) to words of Whitehead, is performed for the first time, in the Great Council Chamber of St. James’ Palace, London, to honor the birthday of King George III.
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June 6, 1778: War of the American Revolution: A three-man commission headed by Frederick Howard, Earl of Carlisle arrives in Philadelphia. They have been sent by Prime Minister Lord North to try to reconcile the colonies to the crown.
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June 11, 1778: Les petits riens, a ballet mostly by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) to a scenario after Piccinni, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Opéra. Mozart composed 13 of the 20 numbers and the overture.
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June 11, 1778: The mother of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) is attended by a physician in Paris who bleeds her to relieve her maladies.
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June 12, 1778: Maria Anna Mozart writes to her husband Leopold (58) that although she has pains in her arm and eyes, she is feeling fine.
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June 12, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) dates his Symphony K.297 in Paris and performs it tonight before a private audience at the home of Count Sickingen. See 18 June 1778.
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June 13, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The Carlisle Peace Commission sends proposals for reconciliation from Philadelphia to the Continental Congress in York, Pennsylvania.
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June 17, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The United States Congress rejects the British conciliation effort.
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June 18, 1778: Symphony K.297 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) is performed publicly for the first time, at a Concert spirituel, Paris. It is “exceptionally successful.” (Abert, 507) Unfortunately, his mother is too ill to attend. See 12 June 1778.
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June 18, 1778: War of the American Revolution: After holding the city for nine months, British troops evacuate Philadelphia making for New York.
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June 19, 1778: While in Paris with her son, Wolfgang Amadeus (22), Maria Anna Mozart takes to bed with what is probably typhoid fever.
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June 19, 1778: War of the American Revolution: United States troops enter Philadelphia. Benedict Arnold is appointed military governor.
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June 24, 1778: Fearful of French doctors, Maria Anna Mozart is seen by Dr. Franz Joseph Haina, a German doctor in Paris.
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June 26, 1778: Dr. Franz Joseph Haina informs Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) that his mother will not recover from her illness. She has been in bed for a week.
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June 27, 1778: Le jugement de Midas, an opéra-comique by André-Ernest-Modeste Grétry (37) to words of d’Hèle after O’Hara, is performed publicly for the first time, at the Théâtre Italien, Paris. See 28 March 1778.
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June 27, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The United States Congress adjourns in York, Pennsylvania to return to Philadelphia.
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June 28, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The Battle of Monmouth Courthouse takes place near Freehold, New Jersey 40 km east of Trenton, in temperatures exceeding 40°C. It is a pitched battle with heavy losses and an inconclusive result, although the British concede the field to the Americans as they retreat from Philadelphia to New York.
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July 2, 1778: Jean-Jacques Rousseau dies in Ermenonville, France at the age of 66.
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July 2, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The United States Congress convenes in Philadelphia for the first time in nine months.
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July 3, 1778: 2230 The mother of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) dies in Paris, probably of typhoid fever. A few hours later, the composer writes to his father, telling him that Frau Mozart is very ill.
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July 3, 1778: War of the Bavarian Succession: Prussia declares war on Austria.
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July 4, 1778: 0200 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to a family friend in Salzburg, Abbé Bullinger, informing him of his mother’s death.
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July 4, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Loyalists and Indians destroy Wyoming, Pennsylvania killing 360 militiamen.

American forces capture Kaskaskia (Illinois).

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July 5, 1778: War of the Bavarian Succession: Prussian troops enter Imperial territory in Bohemia near Náchod 130 km northeast of Prague.
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July 6, 1778: War of the American Revolution: When news of the declaration of war on France reaches India, British forces occupy the French possession of Chandernagore (Chandannagar).
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July 8, 1778: War of the American Revolution: After an encounter between a French ship and a British ship off Brest results in the flight of the British and the grounding of the French, the French fleet is ordered to sea.

A French fleet arrives in Delaware Bay.

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July 9, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to his father from Paris, “If only the confounded French language weren’t so damned impossible where music is concerned. It’s hopeless. German is divine in comparison. And then there are the singers! In fact, they shouldn’t be called singers at all, as they don’t sing but scream and howl at the tops of their voices.” (Abert, 499)
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July 10, 1778: War of the American Revolution: France declares war on Great Britain.
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July 13, 1778: Abbé Bullinger informs Leopold Mozart (58) that his wife has died in Paris.
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July 13, 1778: War of the Bavarian Succession: Baron Thugut secretly leaves Vienna carrying a peace proposal from Empress Maria Theresia to the Prussians.  It is done without the knowledge of Emperor Joseph II, who is with the army.
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July 15, 1778: War of the Bavarian Succession: Having been informed by his mother of the peace mission of Baron Thugut, Emperor Joseph II reacts strongly in the negative and fires off a missile to Vienna offering to resign and retire from public life.
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July 17, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The Continental Congress in York, Pennsylvania, in the person of its president Henry Laurens, responds negatively to the Carlisle Peace Commission, until the British government recognizes the independence of the United States of America.
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July 20, 1778: War of the American Revolution: American forces take Vincennes (Indiana).
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July 20, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to his father from Paris, “Well, what are you hearing about the war? For the last three days I have been dreadfully sad and depressed. True, it doesn’t really concern me, but I am so sensitive, that I immediately feel interested in any matter. I hear that the Emperor has been defeated...Second, it was said that the King had attacked the Emperor and completely surrounded him and that if General Laudon had not come to his rescue with eighteen hundred cuirassiers, he would have been taken prisoner; that sixteen hundred cuirassiers had been killed and Laudon himself shot dead.. Today, however, I was told that the Emperor had invaded Saxony with forty thousand men; but I don’t know whether this is true...”
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July 24, 1778: Giovanni Paisiello’s (38) dramma giocoso Lo sposo burlato to words of Casti is performed for the first time, at the Russian Court, St. Petersburg.
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July 27, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The British and French fleets engage 110 km off Ushant (Île d’Ouessant), at the westernmost tip of Brittany, resulting in the retirement of the British. 533 people are killed, 1,203 wounded.
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July 29, 1778: Prince Ludwig Otto Karl of Salm-Salm dies and is succeeded by his five-year-old nephew, Konstantin Alexander Joseph, under regency.
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August 3, 1778: L’Europa riconosciuta, a dramma per musica by Antonio Salieri (27) to words of Verazi, is performed for the first time, for the opening of Teatro alla Scala, Milan. The audience reaction is mixed. The theatre has been built to replace the Royal Ducal Theatre which burned down two years ago. It is named after Regina della Scala who built a church here in the 1300s.
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August 8, 1778: War of the American Revolution: Canadians and Indians lay siege to Boonesboro (Kentucky).
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August 9, 1778: War of the American Revolution: A hurricane hits Rhode Island damaging many French and British ships. The planned combined US-France attack on the British in Newport is abandoned.
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August 17, 1778: Duke Karl II of Arenberg dies in Enghien and is succeeded by his son, Ludwig Engelbert.
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August 20, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The siege of Boonesboro by Canadians and Indians is lifted.
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August 27, 1778: Shortly after seeing Johann Christian Bach (42) in Paris for the last time, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to his father saying “I love him (as you know) with all my heart and respect him highly; and as for him, there is no doubt that he has praised me, not only to my face, but to others also, not in an exaggerated way like some, but seriously, truly.”
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August 31, 1778: Leopold Mozart (58) writes to his son (22) in Paris informing him that the post of court organist in Salzburg is open.
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September 1, 1778: Kalafat Mehmed Pasha replaces Darendeli Cebecizade Mehmed Pasha as Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire.
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September 1, 1778: Elector Karl Philipp Theodor decrees that a national theatre be created in Mannheim with an annual court grant.
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September 4, 1778: A treaty of friendship and commerce is signed by representatives of the United States and the Netherlands.
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September 7, 1778: War of the American Revolution: French forces capture the British island of Dominica in the Caribbean.
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September 14, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The Continental Congress names Benjamin Franklin their sole minister to France. Hitherto, there has been a three-man team.

British forces occupy St. Pierre and Miquelon.

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September 17, 1778: Publication of two piano duets op.15 by Johann Christian Bach (43) is announced in the Public Advertiser in London.
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September 18, 1778: War of the American Revolution: British forces capture the French outpost of Pondicherry, India.
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September 26, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) departs Paris for Salzburg. One of his fellow travellers is a man who openly admits he suffers from “the French disease.”
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October 12, 1778: La partie de chasse, an opéra comique by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges (32) to words of Desfontaines, is performed for the first time, at the Comédie-Italienne. It is a hit with audience and critics.
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October 14, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) arrives in Strasbourg from Paris.
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October 17, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) performs the first of three concerts in Strasbourg. They are well received but attendance is low.
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October 24, 1778: Count Heinrich Ernst II of Stolberg and Wernigerode dies in Halberstadt and is succeeded by his son, Christian Friedrich.
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October 27, 1778: Joseph Haydn (46) sells his house in Eisenstadt. He lives at Esterháza most of the time.
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November 2, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) writes to his father from Strasbourg, “Kapellmeister (Franz Xaver) Richter (68)...now lives very economically, for instead of forty bottles of wine a day he swills about twenty.” (Marshall, 351)
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November 3, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) departs Strasbourg for Mannheim on his way home from Paris. His departure has been delayed by flooding.
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November 6, 1778: The Lenoir Ordinance renews the prohibition of prostitution in France. However, if prostitutes insist on plying their trade they must not do so in public places. If they insist on public places, they must confine themselves to certain parts of Paris.
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November 6, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) reaches Mannheim on his way back to Salzburg from Paris.
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November 12, 1778: The Coliseo in Zaragoza, Spain burns down during an opera performance. Around 400 people are killed.
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November 13, 1778: Barely a month after the death of his son, Carl Philip Emanuel Bach (64) sends the manuscript for the first volume of Sechs Clavier-Sonaten für Kenner und Liebhaber to his publisher Breitkopf.
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November 14, 1778: Johann Nepomuk Hummel is born at Huttergasse 50 (now Klobunická 2) in Pressburg (Bratislava), Kingdom of Hungary, the only child of Johannes Hummel, violinist and conductor, and Margaretha Sommer, widow of a wig maker.
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November 20, 1778: André-Ernest-Modeste Grétry’s (37) opéra-comique Les fausses apparences, ou L’amant jaloux, to words of d’Hèle after Centlivre is performed for the first time, at Versailles.
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November 24, 1778: L’avaro deluso, o Don Calandrino, a dramma giocoso by Antonio Sacchini (48) to words of Andrei after Bertati, is performed for the first time, in King’s Theatre, London.
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November 26, 1778: On his second visit to the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii), Captain Cook reaches Maui.
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November 27, 1778: War of the American Revolution: The Carlisle Peace Commission departs North America to return to Britain, having failed in their mission.
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November 30, 1778: Captain Cook reaches the island of Hawaii and marvels at the snow-capped mountains.
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December 7, 1778: Niccolò Piccinni’s (50) opera buffa La buona figliuola is performed at the Paris Opéra. It proves to be his greatest success in Paris. See 6 February 1760.
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December 7, 1778: The Independent Ledger, Boston reports as “just published” the collection by William Billings (32) entitled The Singing Master’s Assistant.
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December 8, 1778: This is the approximate date of the appearance in Cheshire, Connecticut, of Andrew Law’s (29) first publication, the Select Harmony .
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December 9, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) departs Mannheim on his way to Salzburg.
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December 10, 1778: John Jay replaces Henry Laurens as President of the Congress of the United States.
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December 13, 1778: War of the American Revolution: British forces land on Saint Lucia.
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December 13, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) reaches the Abbey of Kaysersheim on his way back to Salzburg from Paris.
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December 14, 1778: War of the American Revolution: British forces capture Morne Fortune, the capital of Saint Lucia, as well as all important ports on the island.
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December 15, 1778: War of the American Revolution: French forces from Martinique land on Saint Lucia.
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December 17, 1778: War of the American Revolution: British and Indians retake Vincennes (Indiana) from the Americans.
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December 18, 1778: War of the American Revolution: French forces attack the British at Saint Lucia but are repulsed.
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December 24, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) departs the Abbey of Kaysersheim making for Munich.
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December 25, 1778: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (22) reaches Munich on his way from Paris to Salzburg. He will lodge with the Weber family.
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December 26, 1778: Quinto Fabio, a dramma serio by Dmitry Stepanovich Bortnyansky (27) to words of Zeno, is performed for the first time, in the Court Theatre, Modena.
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December 26, 1778: Adriano in Siria, a dramma per music by Giuseppe Sarti (49) to words of Metastasio, is performed for the first time, in Teatro Argentina, Rome.
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December 27, 1778: La scuola de gelosi, a dramma giocosa by Antonio Salieri (28) to words of Mazzolà, is performed for the first time, in Teatro San Moisè, Venice. The work achieves great success.
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December 28, 1778: War of the American Revolution: French forces abandon Saint Lucia and retire to Martinique.
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December 29, 1778: War of the American Revolution: British and loyalists defeat hastily assembled Americans defending Savannah, Georgia. They take the town.
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December 31, 1778: Aloise Mocenigo IV, Doge of Venice, dies.
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December 31, 1778: Ignaz Joseph Graf von Spaur replaces Leopold Maria Joseph Graf von Spaur as Prince-Bishop of Brixen.
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December 31, 1778: Antonio Soler (48) composes the hymn Crudelis Herodes.