January 6, 1816: The details of the Holy Alliance are made public by Tsar Alyeksandr.
January 9, 1816: Ludwig van Beethoven (45) wins custody of his nephew in opposition to the boy’s mother. See 28 November 1815.
January 9, 1816: Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Nassau dies in Weilburg and is succeeded by his son, Wilhelm.
January 12, 1816: Giunone, a cantata for the birthday of King Ferdinando IV of Naples by Gioachino Rossini (23), is performed for the first time, in Teatro San Carlo, Naples.
January 17, 1816: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a comedy with music by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words of Reynolds after Shakespeare and Garrick, is performed for the first time, in Covent Garden, London.
January 24, 1816: Sri Vikrama Rajasinha, the deposed King of Kandy (Sri Lanka), is deported to exile in India by the British.
January 24, 1816: Juan Esteban Lozano de Torres replaces Pedro Cevallos Guerra as First Secretary of State of Spain.
January 26, 1816: Pedro Cevallos Guerra replaces Juan Esteban Lozano de Torres as First Secretary of State of Spain.
January 28, 1816: The Septet op.74 for piano, flute, oboe, horn, viola, cello, and bass by Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) is performed for the first time, in Vienna.
February 2, 1816: Karl van Beethoven is taken from his mother and entered in the private boarding school of Cajeten Giannatasio del Rio. He is officially under the guardianship of his uncle Ludwig (45).
February 7, 1816: Lord Byron’s The Siege of Corinth and Parsinia are published together.
February 7, 1816: The Congress of New Granada invests Simón Bolivar with political and military control of the invasion of Venezuela from Haiti.
February 12, 1816: Fire destroys most of the city of St. John’s, Newfoundland.
February 13, 1816: Teatro San Carlo in Naples is destroyed by fire. The cost of rebuilding will be paid entirely by the wealthy Domenico Barbaja.
February 15, 1816: Alastor, or, The Spirit of Solitude by Percy Bysshe Shelley is published sometime in mid-February.
February 20, 1816: Almaviva, ossia L’inutile precauzione (later called Il barbiere di Siviglia), a commedia by Gioachino Rossini (23) to words of Sterbini after Beaumarchais and Petrosellini, is performed for the first time, in Teatro Argentina, Rome. The evening is a disaster. A hostile audience whistles Rosina. Bartolo trips over a trap door and bloodies his nose (for which the onlookers called for an encore). A cat appears and steals the show, urged on by the audience. See 10 August 1816.
February 21, 1816: Ludwig van Beethoven (45) obtains a court order forbidding his late brother’s wife Johanna from visiting her son at boarding school.
February 22, 1816: Spanish forces annihilate a rebel army at Cachirí (Colombia).
February 26, 1816: The Holy Governing Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church decrees that no new compositions be used in churches without the approval of the Director of the Imperial Kapella, Dmitry Stepanovich Bortnyansky (65). This makes him one of the most powerful musical figures in Russia.
February 27, 1816: Great Britain restores Surinam to the Netherlands.
March 5, 1816: La fête du village voisin, an opéra comique by Adrien Boieldieu (40) to words of Sewrin, is performed for the first time, at the Théâtre Feydeau, Paris. The performance is a disaster due to the inept libretto and the poet is whistled when he appears at the end.
March 6, 1816: The Senate of the free city of Lübeck decrees that all Jews must leave the city within four weeks.
March 11, 1816: A joint concert by Nicolò Paganini (33) and Charles Philippe Lafont in Teatro alla Scala, Milan develops into a duel between the two.
March 12, 1816: Guy Mannering, or The Gipsy’s Prophecy, a musical play with music by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words of Terry after Scott, is performed for the first time, in Covent Garden, London.
March 18, 1816: Gli amori di Teolinda, a dramatic cantata for soprano, clarinet, chorus and orchestra by Giacomo Meyerbeer (24) to words of Rossi is performed for the first time, in Verona.
March 19, 1816: Heinrich Christoph Koch dies in Rudolstadt in the Principality of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, aged 66 years, five months, and nine days.
March 20, 1816: Maria I, the insane, Queen of Portugal dies in Rio de Janeiro. She is succeeded by her son João VI in Brazil.
March 21, 1816: The Principality of Isenburg-Birstein is annexed by Hesse-Darmstadt.
March 21, 1816: All four children of Abraham and Lea Mendelssohn, Fanny (10), Felix (7), Rebecka, and Paul, are secretly baptized into the Lutheran faith in the Jerusalemkirche, Berlin. Felix is given the added names Jakob Ludwig. Fanny is baptised Cäcilie.
March 24, 1816: Duke Friedrich August of Nassau dies in Wiesbaden. With his death, the co-rulership of Nassau is unified in Wilhelm, who is styled Duke of Nassau.
April 9, 1816: Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) gives a solo performance in Prague. It is his first time in the city in 20 years.
April 10, 1816: In response to the banking crisis of 1814, President James Madison signs a bill creating the Second Bank of the United States. The first bank lost its charter in 1811.
April 16, 1816: Who Wants a Wife? or The Law of the Land, a musical drama with music by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words of Pocock, is performed for the first time, in Covent Garden, London.
April 17, 1816: Josef von Spaun writes to Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, enclosing manuscript copies of settings of Goethe poems by “a 19-year-old composer by the name of Franz Schubert.” He asks permission from Goethe that Schubert might dedicate an edition of his German songs to the poet. The manuscripts will be returned without comment.
April 24, 1816: Le nozze di Teti, e di Peleo, a cantata by Gioachino Rossini (24) to words of Ricci, is performed for the first time, in Naples for the betrothal of Carolina Ferdinanda Luigia, daughter of the Hereditary Prince of the Two Sicilies, and Charles-Ferdinand, Duc de Berry, second son of future King Charles X of France. The work is performed in Teatro del Fondo because Teatro San Carlo burned down two months ago.
April 27, 1816: The US government imposes a highly restrictive tariff on most goods.
April 29, 1816: Inno alla primavera, a cantata for four solo voices and orchestra by Luigi Cherubini (55) to words of Vestri, is performed for the first time, in London. This is the last of his commissions from the Royal Philharmonic Society and was intended for last year when the composer was present, but was not ready for performance before the season ended.
May 1, 1816: The Duchy of Salzburg is returned to Austria.
May 2, 1816: Princess Charlotte Augusta, daughter of the Prince Regent of Great Britain, marries Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld at Carlton House.
May 3, 1816: Having sailed from Haiti with 250 men, Simón Bolívar once again sets foot in Venezuela at Juan Griego Harbor.
May 5, 1816: Grand Duke Carl August of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach grants the first German constitution.
May 5, 1816: A Spanish army captures the rebel capital of Bogotá, putting many of the inhabitants to death.
May 5, 1816: The first published poem by John Keats, “O Solitude”, appears in The Examiner.
May 6, 1816: The Royal Nuptials, or The Masque of Hymen, a pageant with music by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words possibly by Farley, is performed for the first time, in Covent Garden, London.
May 8, 1816: Legal since 1792, divorce is once again outlawed in France.
May 11, 1816: Delegates meet in New York City to found the American Bible Society.
May 12, 1816: Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) gives a second performance in Leipzig. Both this and the one of five days ago are extraordinarily successful.
May 19, 1816: The Spanish government allows Jesuits to return to New Spain.
May 23, 1816: Tsar Alyeksandr signs an act abolishing serfdom in Estonia.
May 25, 1816: Christabel and Other Poems by Samuel Taylor Coleridge is published.
May 27, 1816: The British sign an alliance with Raja Madhoji Bhonsle of Nagpur.
June 5, 1816: Giovanni Paisiello dies at his home in Naples of hepatitis and meterorism (gaseous distention of the stomach or intestine), aged 76 years and 27 days.
June 6, 1816: During the Year Without a Summer, 15-30 cm of snow falls on northern New England, Quebec, and the Maritimes.
June 13, 1816: A Spanish army defeats a larger rebel force under Simón Bolívar at Los Aguacates, Venezuela. At night, Bolívar flees to Bonaire.
June 13, 1816: Franz Schubert’s (19) song Amalia D.195 to words of Schiller, is performed for the first time, in the Vienna home of Frau von Jenny.
June 16, 1816: Celebrations take place in Vienna honoring the 50th anniversary of Antonio Salieri’s (65) arrival in the city. He receives a gold medal from the Lord Chamberlain in the name of Emperor Franz. High Mass is celebrated, during which Salieri conducts his own music. In the evening, a concert by his pupils takes place in his Vienna home, wherein Beitrag zur fünfzigjährigen Jubelfeier des Herrn Salieri D.441 for solo voices and piano by Franz Schubert (19) is performed for the first time.
June 16, 1816: During a rainstorm at his villa in Geneva, Lord Byron writes and reads several horror tales to his guests and suggests they do the same. One of the guests is 19-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, who thereupon pens Frankenstein.
June 17, 1816: As part of the “year without a summer”, a blizzard hits New England.
June 17, 1816: Franz Schubert (19) records in his diary that today he composed for money for the first time. It is his cantata Prometheus. See 24 July 1816.
June 17, 1816: The City Council of Baltimore authorizes the Gas-Light Company of Baltimore to construct pipes on or under streets to carry gas throughout the city. It is the first city in the western hemisphere to do so.
June 19, 1816: The Battle of Seven Oaks takes place (at present Winnipeg) between Métis of the North West Company and a party of Hudson Bay Company men. The Métis kill 21 HBC including Governor Robert Semple at the loss of only one man.
June 20, 1816: An Aria per mezzosoprano by Giacomo Meyerbeer (24) is performed for the first time, in Naples.
June 21, 1816: King Willem I of the Netherlands adheres to the Holy Alliance.
June 21, 1816: Les dieux rivaux, ou Les fêtes de Cythère, an opéra-ballet by Gaspare Spontini (41) to words of Dieulafoy and Brifaut, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Opéra.
June 22, 1816: Britain ends its 13-year occupation of St. Pierre and Miquelon. The islands revert to a French colony.
July 3, 1816: The French frigate La Méduse, carrying many passengers including the new governor of Senegal, soldiers and colonists, is wrecked upon rocks off Cap Blanc. Important officers and their dependents are placed in lifeboats while about 150 enlisted men and settlers have to make do with an improvised and highly unseaworthy raft. When the raft is finally rescued after twelve days, only 15 are left alive. The incident causes a scandal in the French government and inspires a very important painting by Theodore Gericault.
July 7, 1816: Richard Brinsley Sheridan dies in London at the age of 64.
July 9, 1816: An assembly of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata (Argentina) in Tucumán declares independence from Spain.
July 13, 1816: On his way back to Prague from Berlin, Carl Maria von Weber (29) stops in Carlsbad (Karlovy Vary) where he will stay until 17 July. While there he will meet Count Heinrich Vitzthum von Eckstädt, Intendant of the royal Saxon Theatre. Vitzthum will propose that Weber direct a new German language opera company in Dresden.
July 21, 1816: Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel dates the forward to the second volume of his Wissenschaft der Logik in Nuremberg.
July 22, 1816: Exit by Mistake, a comedy with music by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words of Jameson, is performed for the first time, in the Little Theatre in the Haymarket, London.
July 24, 1816: Adrien Boieldieu (40) is named a member of the Conseil Littéraire of the Royal Academy of Music.
July 24, 1816: Prometheus D.451, a cantata for two solo voices, chorus, and orchestra by Franz Schubert (19) to words of Dräxler von Carin, is performed for the first time, in the garden of the Erdberggasse house, Vienna. It is his first commission.
July 25, 1816: British forces evacuate Guadeloupe, returning it to French control.
July 27, 1816: At Negro Fort, Florida (near Blountstown), United States troops and Creek Indians destroy a settlement of Seminoles and runaway slaves. 270 men, women and children are killed, 64 wounded. None of the attackers is hurt. News of the massacre is suppressed by the US government.
August 3, 1816: On his second trip to the continent, Henry R. Bishop (29) visits the battleground at Waterloo. He picks cornflowers which he presses in the pages of his diary.
August 10, 1816: Almaviva, ossia L’inutile precauzione, a commedia by Gioachino Rossini (24) is produced at Teatro Contovalli, Bologna, for the first time under the title Il barbiere di Siviglia. See 20 February 1816.
August 14, 1816: Great Britain annexes Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic.
August 17, 1816: Publication of the Septet op.74 for piano, flute, oboe, horn, viola, cello, and bass by Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) is announced in the Wiener Zeitung.
August 19, 1816: The British authorities in Batavia (Djakarta) hand the Dutch East Indies back to the Netherlands.
August 19, 1816: Carl Maria von Weber (29) accepts the terms of Count Heinrich Vitzthum von Eckstädt and will be appointed Kapellmeister in Dresden. His primary duties will be to direct the German opera but will also include church music at court and the Italian opera.
August 27, 1816: Ten Royal Navy and Dutch ships battle the shore defenses of Algiers for eight hours. They are seeking the release of over a thousand Christian slaves. One British ship is damaged but the shore batteries are silenced and over 5,000 Algerians are killed.
August 28, 1816: Despondent over the death of a child and unable to work, Samuel Wesley (50) writes to his brother and sister pleading for a loan, secured against his inheritance.
September 5, 1816: Urged on by his liberal advisors, King Louis XVIII of France dissolves the conservative Chamber of Deputies and calls new elections.
September 7, 1816: Franz Schubert (19) learns that his application to be music master in Laibach (Ljubljana) has been refused.
September 13, 1816: While working at the Hôpital Necker in Paris, French physician René Théophile-Hyacinthe Laënnec rolls up a piece of paper and puts his ear at one end and a patient’s chest at another. He will shortly develop the instrument into the stethoscope.
September 24, 1816: Algeria signs peace terms with Great Britain, promising to restrict piracy, abolishing enslavement of Christians and releasing 1,083 Europeans held for ransom.
September 26, 1816: Gioachino Rossini’s (24) dramma La gazzetta to words of Palomba after Goldoni is performed for the first time, in Teatro dei Fiorentini, Naples. It falls flat.
September 27, 1816: Concerto for violin and orchestra no.8 by Louis Spohr (32) is performed for the first time, in Teatro alla Scala, Milan.
October 2, 1816: Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) accepts a position with King Friedrich I of Württemberg in Stuttgart.
October 3, 1816: Perchè muni tiranni, a rondo for soprano, chorus, and orchestra by Giacomo Meyerbeer (25) is performed for the first time, in Genoa.
October 4, 1816: A second round of voting concludes elections to the French legislature. Moderate royalists win a majority of seats.
October 7, 1816: Carl Maria von Weber (29), having resigned his position as opera director, leaves Prague for Berlin. Soprano Caroline Brandt and her mother travel with him.
October 11, 1816: Johann Nepomuk Hummel (37) reaches Stuttgart to take up his new position with King Friedrich I of Württemberg.
October 18, 1816: Louis Spohr (32) performs on the violin today in Venice. Here he will meet Nicolò Paganini (33) and, although he does not hear him play, Spohr is impressed by all the things Venetians, laymen and connoisseurs alike, have to say about him. “No instrumental player has ever captivated the Italians as he has done...”
October 24, 1816: Adolphus Frederick, Duke of Cambridge, the youngest son of King George III, becomes Governor-General and Viceroy of Hannover.
October 27, 1816: An invading Portuguese army from Brazil soundly defeats Uruguayans at Carumbé Hill, northwest of Santana do Livramento.
October 30, 1816: King Friedrich I of Württemberg dies and is succeeded by his son, Wilhelm I.
October 30, 1816: José García de León y Pizarro replaces Pedro Cevallos Guerra as First Secretary of State of Spain.
November 5, 1816: The Diet of the German Confederation meets at Frankfurt-am-Main.
November 6, 1816: Grand Duke Karl II Ludwig Friedrich of Mecklenburg-Strelitz dies in Neustrelitz and is suceeded by his son Georg.
November 8, 1816: A setting of the Tantum ergo by Gaetano Donizetti (18) for male chorus and orchestra is performed for the first time.
November 10, 1816: Piano Sonata J.199 by Carl Maria von Weber (29) is performed for the first time, in a private home in Berlin, by the composer.
November 12, 1816: The Slave, a musical drama by Henry R. Bishop (29) to words of Morton, is performed for the first time, in Covent Garden, London.
November 14, 1816: The Senate of Genoa requires Nicolò Paganini (34) to pay 3,000 francs in damages to Ferdinando Cavanna. The musician refuses to pay.
November 15, 1816: Henry “Orator” Hunt addresses a meeting of 10,000 people at Spa Fields in favor of a petition to the Prince Regent requesting parliamentary reform, universal male suffrage, annual general elections, and secret ballot. He will attempt to present the petition to the Prince Regent but will be denied twice.
November 16, 1816: La journée aux aventures, an opéra comique by Étienne-Nicholas Méhul (53) to words of Chapelle and Mézières-Miot, is performed for the first time, in the Théâtre Feydeau, Paris.
November 18, 1816: Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage: Canto the Third by George Gordon, Lord Byron is published.
November 19, 1816: The Royal University of Warsaw is founded.
November 19, 1816: On the eve of her departure from Berlin, soprano Caroline Brandt becomes engaged to Carl Maria von Weber (30).
November 19, 1816: Uruguayans are once again defeated by invading Portuguese at India Muerta Creek.
November 25, 1816: Having divorced himself from the London Philharmonic Society, Muzio Clementi (64) departs London for Paris.
December 2, 1816: A second meeting is held at Spa Fields to protest the treatment afforded Henry “Orator” Hunt by the Prince Regent after the first meeting of 15 November. Before Hunt arrives a section of the crowd, led by a tricolor, marches on the Tower of London to liberate the weapons there, a la Bastille. They are easily thwarted by the authorities and the ringleaders are arrested and charged with treason. They will be acquitted.
December 4, 1816: Otello, ossia Il moro di Venezia, a dramma by Gioachino Rossini (24) to words of Berio di Salsa after Shakespeare, is performed for the first time, in the Teatro del Fondo, Naples. The work is a success.
December 5, 1816: The Prisoner of Chillon, and Other Poems by George Gordon, Lord Byron is published.
December 8, 1816: The Kingdom of Naples and the Kingdom of Sicily formally unite as the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies under King Ferdinando I (formerly King Ferdinando IV of Naples and King Ferdinando III of Sicily).
December 11, 1816: Indiana becomes the 19th state of the United States.
December 12, 1816: At a General Meeting of the London Philharmonic Society, a replacement is named for Muzio Clementi (64) as treasurer. It is decided to leave his name on the list of directors.
December 15, 1816: On the eve of his 46th birthday, Ludwig van Beethoven suffers the death of one of his most important patrons, Prince Franz Joseph Lobkowitz.
December 21, 1816: Men from opposite ends of the slavery issue meet in the Davis Hotel in Washington to form the American Colonization Society to transport free blacks to Africa. Among them are Secretary of State James Monroe, Supreme Court Justice Bushrod Washington, General Andrew Jackson, Francis Scott Key, and Congressman Daniel Webster.
December 23, 1816: Having sat up most of the night in Rome going through possible opera scenarios, the impresario Pietro Cartoni, the librettist Jacopo Ferretti, and the composer Gioachino Rossini (24) finally settle on Cinderella.
December 25, 1816: Carl Maria von Weber (30) is informed by letter in Berlin that he has been appointed Kapellmeister to King Friedrich August I of Saxony in Dresden. He is appointed in an attempt to equate German opera with the Italian opera dominant in the city.