January 2, 1842: Great Britain agrees to evacuate Afghanistan.
January 4, 1842: Samuel Sebastian Wesley (31) resigns as organist at Exeter Cathedral.
January 6, 1842: 4,500 British and troops along with 12,000 civilians depart Kabul making for India.
January 7, 1842: The second version of Gioachino Rossini’s (49) Stabat mater is performed publicly for the first time, in the Théâtre-Italien, Paris to an enthusiastic response.
January 10, 1842: The Second Section of the ecclesiastical consistory in St. Petersburg determines that Maria Petrovna Glinka’s marriage to Nikolay Nikolayevich Vasilchikov is not valid.
January 13, 1842: Of the 16,000 British and Indians who evacuated Kabul a week ago, only one, a Dr. Bryan, reaches Jalalabad. Within two weeks, a small number of Sepoys will also reach the town. The others have all been killed by Ghilzais or the Afghan winter.
January 16, 1842: The Ottoman Empire divides Lebanon into a Christian north and Druze south.
January 19, 1842: An advertisement for a new “Beethoven-Album” for piano by the Vienna music publisher Pietro Mechetti appears in the Wiener Zeitung. Intended to raise money for a monument to Beethoven (†14) in Bonn, Mechetti has secured contributions from many of the most important living composers: Nocturne in E flat op.647 by Carl Czerny (50), L’echo! Scherzo brillant by Frédéric Kalkbrenner (46), 17 Variations sérieuses op.54 by Felix Mendelssohn (32), Prélude in c sharp minor op.45 by Frédéric Chopin (31), Marche funèbre de la Symphonie héroique by Franz Liszt (30), Romance sans paroles op.41/1 by Sigismond Thalberg (30), Wiegenlied op.13/1 by Adolf von Henselt (27), as well as music by Theodor Döhler, Ignaz Moscheles and Wilhelm Taubert.
January 21, 1842: In a London street, a would-be assassin desirous of killing Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel, mistakenly shoots Peel’s private secretary, Edward Drummond, to death.
January 23, 1842: Captain James Clark Ross aboard HMS Erebus reaches a farthest south of 78°09’30” at 164°W.
February 1, 1842: Reverie et caprice for violin and orchestra by Hector Berlioz (38) is performed for the first time, in the Salle Vivienne, Paris before an audience which includes Franz Liszt (30), Marie d’Agoult, and César Franck (19). Because of muscle spasms, Berlioz conducts most of the concert with his left hand.
February 4, 1842: Le duc d’Olonne, an opéra comique by Daniel Auber (60) to words of Scribe and Saintine, is performed for the first time, at the Théâtre Favart, Paris.
February 5, 1842: Felix Mendelssohn (33) writes to Ferdinand David about the playing of Franz Liszt (30), “...he sacrificed a large part of my esteem by the foolish antics he plays not just with his audience (there is no harm in that) but with the music itself as well. He played Beethoven (†14), Bach (†91), Handel (†82) and Weber (†15) with such wretched shortcomings, so untidily and ignorantly, that I had much rather have heard them played by mediocre pianists.”
February 6, 1842: Gioachino Rossini’s (49) mistress, Olympe Pélissier, sends a five-year description of Rossini’s illness compiled by his Bologna doctor to Hector Couvert, hoping that he will take the case to Parisian specialists of the urinary tract.
February 7, 1842: Pedro de Sousa Holstein, duque, marques e conde de Palmela replaces Joaquim António de Aguiar as Prime Minister of Portugal.
February 9, 1842: António José de Sousa Manuel e Meneses Severim de Nornha, duque de Terceira, marques e conde de Vila-Flor replaces Pedro de Sousa Holstein, duque, marques e conde de Palmela as Prime Minister of Portugal.
February 21, 1842: Queen Victoria inaugurates regular rail service between Glasgow and Edinburgh.
February 21, 1842: Frédéric Chopin (31) is the featured performer at the Salle Pleyel, Paris. He plays the Andante spianato, Ballade no.3, Nocturnes opp.48/2, 27/2 and 15/1, Prelude op.28/15, three etudes from op.25, the Impromptu op.51 and others. It is his last performance for six years.
February 24, 1842: Enrico Giuseppe Giovanni (Arrigo) Boito is born in Padua in the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia, the son of Silvestro Boito, a painter of miniatures, and Józefina Radolińska, a Polish countess.
February 25, 1842: After a concert by Clara Schumann (22) in Oldenburg, she is honored by a gathering at court, to which her husband Robert (31) is excluded. She decides to attend anyway.
February 28, 1842: The publication of Six Songs for voice and piano op.6 by Emilie Zumsteeg (45) is advertised in the Stuttgart Musikalischen Volksblatt.
March 1, 1842: This month, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts decides the case of Commonwealth v. Hunt . They hold that labor unions are not unlawful and that they have the right to organize and strike.
March 3, 1842: Bartolomeo Merelli, the producer of Verdi’s (28) Nabucco, insists on a medical examination of Giuseppina Strepponi, held today. The doctors find “Signora Strepponi to be affected with such laryngo-tracheal inflammation as will lead to consumption unless she at once ceases to exercise her profession and submits herself to similar careful treatment and an uninterruptedly tranquil way of life.” She will go on anyway.
March 3, 1842: After ten triumphant weeks in Berlin, Franz Liszt (30) takes leave of the city, in a coach drawn by six white horses, followed by a procession of thirty more coaches. Prussian students accompany them to the Brandenburg Gate, while the University of Berlin suspends classes. Thousands turn out to see him off.
March 3, 1842: Symphony no.3 “Scottish” by Felix Mendelssohn (33) is performed for the first time, in Leipzig under the direction of the composer.
March 3, 1842: Massachusetts enacts the first child labor laws in the United States. They limit the workday of children under twelve to ten hours.
March 5, 1842: Incidental music to Sophocles’ play Antigone by Felix Mendelssohn (33) is performed publicly for the first time, in Leipzig. See 28 October 1841.
March 6, 1842: Constanze Weber Mozart Nissen dies in Salzburg at the age of 80.
March 7, 1842: Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (37) appears before the consistory in St. Petersburg in the matter of his own divorce. He denies his wife’s charge that he threw her out. In fact, he left the apartment and gave 3,000 rubles per year for her maintenance. He produces 13 letters from his wife to her lover, Nikolay Nikolayevich Vasilchikov and reads sections of them into the record. He flatly refuses to live with her again.
March 7, 1842: Grand Duke Paul Friedrich of Mecklenburg-Schwerin dies in Schwerin and is succeeded by his son Friedrich Franz II.
March 9, 1842: Nabucco, a dramma lirico by Giuseppe Verdi (28) to words of Solera after Cortesi after Anicet-Bourgeois and Cornue, is performed for the first time, in Teatro alla Scala, Milan. The work is an unrivalled triumph and secures Verdi’s reputation. The Gazzetta Privilegiata di Milano calls the production a “clamorous and total success.”
March 10, 1842: On the way from Milan to Bologna, Gaetano Donizetti (44), who has been silent during the trip, suddenly shouts, “Oh, that Nabucco! Beautiful! Beautiful! Beautiful!” to the amazement of his companions.
March 10, 1842: First Opium War: Chinese troops attempt to recapture Ningpo (Ningbo) from the British but are beaten back with heavy losses.
March 10, 1842: In Hamburg on his wife’s concert tour, Robert Schumann (31) leaves his “undignified situation” and returns to Leipzig. Clara Schumann (22) continues on to give performances in Copenhagen. According to her, this is “the most miserable day of our marriage up to now; we parted, and it seemed to me that I would never see him again.”
March 15, 1842: Luigi Carlo Zanobi Salvadore Maria Cherubini dies in Paris, Kingdom of France, aged 81 years, six months, and between one and seven days.
March 16, 1842: Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (37) petitions the Director of Imperial Theatres in St. Petersburg to produce Ruslan and Lyudmilla. He forwards the music and promises the libretto soon. The director, Alyksandr Mikhailovich Gedeonov, immediately accepts and orders its production.
March 18, 1842: Gioachino Rossini’s (50) Stabat mater is performed for the first time in Italy at the Archiginnassio in Bologna, directed by Gaetano Donizetti (44) in the presence of the composer. It is an unqualified triumph. After the last rehearsal, 500 people followed Rossini to his house shouting their approval.
March 19, 1842: 2,000 people, including many notables, attend the funeral mass for Luigi Cherubini at the Church of St. Roch, Paris at which his second Requiem is performed. Because he was a member of the Legion of Honor, his earthly remains are laid to rest in the Cemetery of Père Lachaise with full military honors. Among the pallbearers are Daniel Auber (60) and Fromental Halévy (41).
March 20, 1842: Clara Schumann (22) arrives in Copenhagen for a stay of almost a month. She will meet the Danish royal family, Hans Christian Andersen, Niels Gade and will give seven successful performances.
March 22, 1842: Clara Schumann (22) meets Hans Christian Andersen for the first time, in Copenhagen. He will attend all seven of her concerts.
March 23, 1842: Maire-Henri Beyle (Stendhal) dies in Paris at the age of 59.
March 28, 1842: Maria Petrovna Glinka denies under oath that she ever married Nikolay Nikolayevich Vasilchikov and that she ever received letters from him. She says that her husband, Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (37), bribed “the serf girl” to lie for him. She does not want a divorce.
March 29, 1842: Josephine Lang (27) marries the poet and legal scholar Christian Reinhold Köstlin in the Spitalkirche, Stuttgart, Kingdom of Württemberg, in a Protestant ceremony performed by the groom’s father. Then, owing to her faith, the bridal party travels to a Catholic church where a ceremony is performed by a priest.
March 30, 1842: Dr. Crawford W. Long of Jefferson, Georgia removes two tumors from the neck of James Venable without pain after the administration of ether. It is the first surgical use of anesthesia.
March 30, 1842: A day after their wedding, Josephine Lang Köstlin (27) and Christian Reinhold Köstlin travel from Stuttgart to Frankfurt to visit his stepsister. Over the next three weeks they will visit Bonn and Cologne.
March 31, 1842: Stephen Foster (15), along with his brother William, makes the acquaintance of Charles Dickens during a triumphant visit of Dickens to Pittsburgh.
April 7, 1842: After a siege of five months by Afghans, British forces in Jellalabad (Jalalabad) attack their besiegers, causing them to flee to Kabul.
April 7, 1842: After 30 months of economic destitution, Richard Wagner (28) and his wife Minna leave Paris for Dresden. He is so poor that his relatives forward him travel expenses.
April 12, 1842: A convention of the National Charter Association takes place in London.
April 12, 1842: A meeting takes place to begin to organize the New York Philharmonic Society. It is chaired by Anthony Philip Heinrich (61).
April 12, 1842: Richard Wagner (28) and his wife arrive in Dresden where he will assist in rehearsals for Rienzi.
April 14, 1842: Hector Berlioz’ (38) song Absence op.7/4 to words of Gautier is performed for the first time, in an amateur performance at the Paris home of Mortier de Fontaine. See 24 April 1842.
April 15, 1842: Franz Liszt (30) arrives in St. Petersburg from Berlin where he will give four concerts.
April 16, 1842: British relief forces reach Jellalabad (Jalalabad) and find that the troops there have already liberated themselves.
April 20, 1842: Franz Liszt (30) gives his first performance in St. Petersburg before 3,000 people, the largest audience ever seen in Russia for such an event. The critic Stasov will later write, “After the concert, Serov and I were like madmen. We scarcely exchanged a word, but hurried home, each to write down his impressions, dreams and raptures. We both vowed to keep this anniversary sacred forever, and never, while life lasted, to forget a single instant of it.” Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (37) is also present and says that Liszt “played some things exceptionally well…but other things he played unbearably, with totally inappropriate expression…with often tasteless, worthless, vacuous ornamentation of his own.” It is the first time Glinka meets Vladimir Stasov.
April 22, 1842: César Franck (19) withdraws from the Paris Conservatoire and departs with his father for Belgium.
April 23, 1842: Franz Liszt’s (30) second concert in St. Petersburg is attended by Tsar Nikolay I. Composer and theorist Yuri Arnold will remember, “...I returned home more than merely moved; by such a music-hurricane, of which I had never before had the least presentiment, my whole being was dissolved. No sooner had I pulled off my coat than I flung myself on to the sofa and for a long time wept the bitterest and sweetest tears!”
April 24, 1842: Absence, op.7/4 from Les Nuits d’été for voice and piano by Hector Berlioz (38) to words of Gautier, is performed publicly for the first time, in the Salle du Conservatoire, Paris. See 14 April 1842.
April 27, 1842: Jacques-François-Fromental-Elie Halévy (42) marries Hannah Léonie Rodrigues-Henriques, daughter of wealthy bankers, in Paris.
May 1, 1842: The leaders of the indigenous Marquesas Islanders cede their lands to France.
May 5, 1842: 01:00 Fire breaks out in Hamburg and rapidly spreads fed by strong winds. It burns for four days, destroying over 1,700 buildings in a 12-15 hectare area of the city. 51 people are killed and 20,000 left homeless. 20% of the city is leveled. A change of wind saves the home and family of musician Johann Jakob Brahms, including his son, Johannes (8).
May 5, 1842: Karl Marx contributes his first article to the Rheinische Zeitung in Cologne.
May 6, 1842: Frédéric Chopin (32) and George Sand arrive back at Nohant from Paris, where he will complete the Mazurkas op.50. He is looking for some peace two weeks after the death of his friend Jan Matuszynski.
May 8, 1842: A train travelling between Versailles and Paris derails and catches fire. At least 50 people are killed but some estimates reach as high as 200. The intensity of the fire makes identification of bodies difficult. Among the dead are the famous Antarctic explorere Jules Dumont d’Urville and his family. It is the first major railroad disaster.
May 10, 1842: After a very successful production of Les Huguenots in Stockholm, Giacomo Meyerbeer (50) is created a Knight of the Order of the North Star by King Oscar I of Sweden.
May 12, 1842: 01:00 Jules Émile Frédéric Massenet is born in Quartier La Terrasse, Montaud, a suburb of Saint-Étienne, 58 km southwest of Lyon, Kingdom of France, the fourth and last child born to Alexis Pierre Michel Nicolas Massenet, a master founder and owner of a scythe factory, and Eléonore Adélaïde Royer de Marancour, daughter of a military commissary. This is the father’s second marriage. He has eight children by his first wife. (The house stands at the present 20 Place Massenet, Saint-Étienne)
May 13, 1842: Arthur Seymour Sullivan is born at 8 Bolwell Terrace, off Lambeth Walk in London, United Kingdom, the second of two children born to Thomas Sullivan, clarinetist at the Royal Surrey Theatre, and Mary Clementina Coghlan, a teacher.
May 14, 1842: The Illustrated London News begins publication. It is the first newspaper to regularly illustrate news stories with woodcuts, photographs, and drawings.
May 14, 1842: Poems by Alfred, Lord Tennyson is published. It includes verses such as Le morte d’Arthur and Ulysses.
May 19, 1842: Advocates of universal male suffrage, led by Thomas Dorr, attack the state Arsenal in Providence, Rhode Island. They are beaten off.
May 19, 1842: Linda di Chamounix, a melodramma semiserio by Gaetano Donizetti (44) to words of Rossi after D’Ennery and Lemoine, is performed for the first time, in the Vienna Kärntnertortheater, directed by the composer. At the end, Donizetti is called out 17 times.
May 20, 1842: Anton Rubinstein (12) gives his first important performance in London, at the Hanover Rooms.
May 20, 1842: By command of the new King Friedrich Wilhelm IV, Les Huguenots by Giacomo Meyerbeer (50) is given in Berlin.
May 23, 1842: John Bennet Lawes takes out a British patent on a method for producing superphosphates. By adding sulfuric acid to crushed bones, he creates the first chemical fertilizers.
May 25, 1842: Austrian physicist Christian Johann Doppler reads his work "On the coloured light of double stars and certain other stars of the heaven" to a meeting of the Royal Bohemian Society in Prague. For the first time he describes the effect which bears his name.
May 28, 1842: Gaetano Donizetti (44) is invited to become an honorary member of the Vienna Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde.
May 29, 1842: At the invitation of William Sterndale Bennett, Felix Mendelssohn (33) arrives in London for the seventh time, bringing his new Symphony no.3. For the first time, he is accompanied by his wife.
May 29, 1842: While Queen Victoria and Prince Albert are riding in a carriage in London, 20-year-old John Francis aims a gun at her, but does not fire. He escapes.
May 30, 1842: In an attempt to draw out John Francis once again, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert ride the same route as yesterday. Francis appears and fires at the Queen. She is unhurt and Francis is taken into custody by police.
May 31, 1842: Giacomo Meyerbeer (50) is made a knight of the Order of Merit for the Sciences and Arts, of the Peace Class. It is conferred upon him by King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia. The King names him Generalmusikdirektor.
June 8, 1842: Clara Schumann (22) offers her song Liebeszauber to her husband Robert on the occasion of his 32nd birthday.
June 9, 1842: The first scientific expedition funded by the United States government returns to New York harbor. After four years and 150,000 km, the expedition, led by Charles Wilkes, brings massive amounts of scientific data. Only two of the original six ships complete the voyage.
June 11, 1842: Giacomo Meyerbeer (50) is installed as the Prussian Generalmusikdirektor, a post he gained through the efforts of Alexander von Humboldt. He will oversee secular music.
June 11, 1842: The French national Assembly approves the Railway Law. It provides for seven trunk lines radiating out from Paris and two cross-country routes, Dijon to Mulhouse and Bordeaux to Marseille.
June 13, 1842: Queen Victoria and Prince Albert travel by train from Slough Station to Paddington Station. She is the first reigning British monarch to travel by train.
June 14, 1842: Felix Mendelssohn (33) meets with Prince Albert at Buckingham Palace carrying a letter of introduction from King Friedrich Wilhelm IV.
June 16, 1842: At the Prince Consort’s request, Felix Mendelssohn (33) performs before Victoria and Albert at Buckingham Palace. He plays some songs without words and then asking for two themes he improvises on Rule Britannia and the Austrian national anthem simultaneously. (There is some discrepancy about the date. This appears as 16 June in Victoria’s diary, but it is 20 June according to Mendelssohn).
June 17, 1842: José Ramón Rodil y Gallosa, marqués of Rodil replaces Antonio González y González as Prime Minister of Spain.
June 19, 1842: First Opium War: British forces capture Shanghai.
June 22, 1842: The Income Tax Act is granted royal assent by Queen Victoria. It is the first peacetime income tax in Britain.
June 25, 1842: John Francis is convicted of treason in London for attempting to kill Queen Victoria on 30 May. He is sentenced to death.
July 1, 1842: Queen Victoria gives royal assent to the Copyright Act. Copyrights of books, serial publications, and dramatic works are extended to the life of the author or proprietor plus seven years, and in no case less than 42 years.
July 1, 1842: The sentence of death on John Francis is commuted to transportation for life to Australia.
July 6, 1842: Antonín Dvorák (0) is rescued by his father from a fire that destroys the family inn at Nelahozeves, near Kralupy, 20 km north of Prague.
July 9, 1842: Conservatives win a majority in French legislative elections.
July 9, 1842: Felix Mendelssohn (33) makes a second visit to Buckingham Palace at the request of Prince Albert. The royal couple sing sections of St. Paul to his organ accompaniment. When the Queen ably sings Mendelssohn’s Italien op.8/3, he tells her that it was written by his sister, Fanny (36).
July 9, 1842: “A Report on an Enquiry into the Sanitary Condition of the Labouring Population of Great Britain” is presented to the Home Secretary, Sir James Graham. It comes from the Poor Law Commissioners but the driving force behind it is their secretary, Edwin Chadwick. It is a withering description of the filth, squalor, disease, and early death suffered by poor British subjects. More than anything else, it rouses Her Majesty’s government to action to alleviate the conditions.
July 13, 1842: Gaetano Donizetti (44) receives notification, in Milan, that he is appointed Hofkapellmeister to the Emperor of Austria.
July 13, 1842: The Duc d’Orléans, eldest son of King Louis-Philippe and heir apparent to the French throne, falls to his death when his horses bolt near the Porte Maillot. He was the most popular member of the royal family.
July 17, 1842: First Opium War: British ships begin bombarding Chinkiang (Zhenjiang).
July 18, 1842: Sporadic strikes and protests in Britain against wage cuts and other grievances coalesce today in continuous striking starting with coal miners in Hanley, Staffordshire.
July 21, 1842: First Opium War: British troops assault and capture Chinkiang (Zhenjiang).
July 29, 1842: Dr. James Braid reads his paper “Practical Essay on the Curative Agency of Neuro-Hypnotism” to a meeting of the British Association in Manchester. It is the first use of the term “hypnosis.” There is considerable opposition to his findings.
August 1, 1842: Blacks in Philadelphia stage a parade along Lombard Street to observe the anniversary of the end of slavery in the British Empire. Whites, particularly Irish Catholics, attack the parade and then go on to engage in a three-day-long pogrom complete with physical attacks, looting, and burning.
August 4, 1842: The Florida Armed Occupation Act is signed by President Tyler. It grants land to any white persons willing to settle in Florida more than two miles from a military post. It is an attempt to force out the Seminole Indians.
August 5, 1842: First Opium War: British forces fighting their way up the Yangtze reach Nanking.
August 8, 1842: After three weeks of growing strikes, workers in Stalybridge and Ashton call for a “Great National turn-out.” They begin marching, “turning out” workers along the way
August 9, 1842: 20,000 workers march peacefully in Manchester in support of higher wages and the Charter. Within a few hours, every factory within 80 km of Manchester is shut down. Because the workers pulled the plugs on the factories’ boilers, this becomes known as the Plug Plot.
August 9, 1842: The Webster-Ashburton Treaty is signed in Washington, fixing the border between the United States and Canada.
August 10, 1842: The British Mines Act is passed, preventing women and children under ten years of age from working underground.
August 13, 1842: The British government sends troops and artillery to Lancashire to put down strikes. Queen Victoria declares the strikes illegal and posts a bounty of £50 for anyone who turns in a striker.
August 14, 1842: War between the United States and Seminole Indians ends with the forced removal of Seminoles to west of the Mississippi.
August 15, 1842: Delegates from local trade groups meet in Manchester for the Great Delegate Conference. They endorse the Charter and call for a return to the wages of 1840.
August 16, 1842: Troops fire into strikers in several English cities, killing eight. Authorities begin to arrest strike leaders.
August 16, 1842: The National Charter Association formally endorses the Manchester strikes.
August 21, 1842: Hobart Town, Van Diemen’s Land (Hobart, Tasmania) is incorporated as a city.
August 21, 1842: I was glad when they said unto me, an anthem by Lowell Mason (50) to words of the Psalms, is performed for the first time, in the Bowdoin Street Church, Boston, directed by the composer.
August 23, 1842: Oratorio serioso disharmonico W.13 for vocal trio and piano by Peter Cornelius (17) to his own words is performed for the first time, for his mother’s birthday, in Wiesbaden.
August 24, 1842: A revolutionary plot is uncovered in Braga, Portugal. The ringleaders are arrested.
August 28, 1842: While anchored at Table Bay, Cape Colony, the convict ship Waterloo, bound for Tasmania, founders and breaks up in a strong gale. 113 people survive but 189 are lost, mostly convicts.
August 29, 1842: Several English factories attempt to reopen in the midst of the strikes but worker attendance is minimal. The strikes continue through most of September, with workers at least preventing wage cuts.
August 29, 1842: Incidental music to Schmidt’s play Uranias Festmorgen by Albert Lortzing (40) is performed for the first time, in Berlin. The work celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Urania amateur theatrical company. Lortzing’s parents were founding members.
August 29, 1842: After the British occupy Chou-shan (Zhoushan) Island, Ningpo (Ningbo), Chapu (Zhapu), and Wusung (Wusong) and sail up the Yangtze to Nanking, a peace treaty is concluded at Nanking. Britain receives Hong Kong, an indemnity of $21,000,000 in silver and the opening of five Chinese ports to trade.
September 3, 1842: Mehmed Emin Rauf Pasha replaces Izzet Mehmed Pasha as Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire.
September 4, 1842: King Friedrich Wilhelm IV lays the foundation stone for the recommencement of construction of Cologne Cathedral. Work was stopped in 1473.
September 8, 1842: Prince Mihailo Obrenovic III of Serbia is forced into exile.
September 11, 1842: Invading Mexican troops capture San Antonio, Texas.
September 12, 1842: The “serf girl” in the divorce case of Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (38) testifies that she took letters from Nikolay Nikolayevich Vasilchikov to Maria Petrovna Glinka from Mrs. Glinka’s dresser. See 28 March 1842.
September 13, 1842: Robert Schumann presents the manuscript of the three op.41 string quartets to his wife Clara on her 23rd birthday.
September 14, 1842: Aleksandar Karadjordjevic replaces the absent Mihailo Obrenovic III as Prince of Serbia.
September 14, 1842: The Imperial Censor approves Ruslan and Lyudmilla by Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (38) for public performance.
September 16, 1842: British forces evacuating Afghanistan take Kabul and destroy the great bazar.
September 18, 1842: Hastily assembled Texas volunteers defeat invading Mexicans at Salado Creek.
September 19, 1842: Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka’s (38) opera A Life for the Tsar is given its first Moscow performance. It has been produced in St. Petersburg for six years.
September 20, 1842: After leaving a note for his wife, Harriet Smithson, Hector Berlioz (38) leaves Paris with his lover, the singer Marie Recio, to go to Brussels to concertize.
September 28, 1842: Frédéric Chopin (32) and George Sand move into separate but nearby apartments on the Square d’Orleans, Paris.
October 5, 1842: Hector Berlioz (38) is presented to Leopold I, King of the Belgians in Brussels. He offers the king a manuscript copy of the Marche des pèlerins.
October 9, 1842: L'église Sainte-Marie-Madeleine in Paris, known informally as La Madeleine, is consecrated as a church. Various governments have tried to build a church on the site since 1763.
October 12, 1842: British forces complete their evacuation of Kabul and Afghanistan.
October 13, 1842: Le roi d’Yvetot, an opera by Adolphe Adam (39) to words of Leuven and Brunswick, is performed for the first time, at the Opéra-Comique, Paris.
October 15, 1842: The first issue of The Nation appears in Dublin. It will become an important force in Irish nationalism.
October 16, 1842: Determined to leave his royal appointment, Felix Mendelssohn (33) meets with King Friedrich Wilhelm in Berlin. The king does not agree. He needs Mendelssohn to be part of his reorganization of the musical culture of the city.
October 20, 1842: Believing war to have broken out, Commodore Thomas Jones USN sails into Monterrey harbor and demands the town’s surrender from defenseless officials. They comply and Jones claims California for the United States.
October 20, 1842: Richard Wagner’s (29) grosse tragische Oper Rienzi, der Letzte der Tribunen WWV 49 to his own words after Bulwer Lytton is performed for the first time, in the Dresden Hoftheater. The work is a great success and is very enthusiastically received.
October 21, 1842: Commodore Thomas Jones USN learns that war has not broken out between Mexico and the United States. He lowers his flag and sails away. The US will apologize to Mexico.
October 24, 1842: Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme dies in Lima at the age of 64.
October 26, 1842: Felix Mendelssohn (33) meets with King Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia for a second time in Potsdam to tell him that he feels his appointment is a failure and that he wishes to leave Berlin. Rather than be angry, the king negotiates a more reasonable set of responsibilities for Mendelssohn. He will create a new court chapel which Mendelssohn will conduct and compose for. Before it is established, he is free to travel.
October 28, 1842: Eight days after the enormous success of Rienzi, the Dresden Kapellmeister dies. All eyes turn to Wagner (29).
October 29, 1842: A hurricane hits the Iberian Peninsula.
October 31, 1842: Franz Liszt (31) accepts the title of Kapellmeister in Weimar with a contract clearly delineating the provinces of Kapellmeister and the director of the court theatre. It will be made public on 2 November.
November 2, 1842: Grand Duke Carl Friedrich of Weimar officially names Franz Liszt (31) as his “Kapellmeister Extraordinary.”
November 2, 1842: Charles Gounod’s (24) Messe de Requiem is performed for the first time, in Vienna.
November 11, 1842: Modern pilsner beer, developed by Bavarian brewer Joseph Groll, is first served to the public in Pilsen, Bohemia (Plzen, Czech Republic).
November 13, 1842: Felix Mendelssohn (33) meets with King Friedrich August II in Dresden. He turns down an appointment as Kapellmeister but urges the king to found a conservatory in Leipzig.
November 16, 1842: Progressives and republicans in Barcelona, having successfully chased troops from the city, set up a Provisional Governing Popular Council.
November 21, 1842: King Friedrich August II of Saxony informs Felix Mendelssohn (33) that he will use the estate of Heinrich Blümner to fund a conservatory in Leipzig.
November 22, 1842: The agreement between Felix Mendelssohn (33) and King Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia of 26 October is formalized in a Supreme Cabinet Order naming Mendelssohn Generalmusikdirektor for church music.
November 26, 1842: Eight members of the Congregation of the Holy Cross take possession of 212 hectares in Indiana to found a school called L’Université de Notre Dame du Lac (University of Notre Dame).
December 3, 1842: The Regent Espartero orders the bombardment of republican rebels in Barcelona. In twelve hours, over 1,000 projectiles hit the city destroying almost 500 buildings. Citizens surrender what is left.
December 7, 1842: The New York Philharmonic Orchestra performs for the first time, in the Apollo Rooms on Broadway.
December 9, 1842: Ruslan and Lyudmilla, an opera by Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (38) to words of the composer, Kukolnik, Shirkov, Markevich, and Gedeonov after Pushkin is performed for the first time, in the Bolshoy Theatre, St. Petersburg. The production is flawed from the start with bad sets, some inadequate singers and an undramatic libretto. The audience reception includes both loud applause and hissing.
December 12, 1842: Hector Berlioz (39) and Marie Recio leave Paris, once again for Brussels, but with intentions of an extended tour of Germany.
December 19, 1842: The United States recognizes the independence of Hawaii.
December 21, 1842: Pentonville prison opens to receive prisoners. It is part of a new system of correction based on isolation, silence, and contemplation.
December 23, 1842: The artistic elite of Paris gather at the Hôtel L’Empire to bid farewell to Giacomo Meyerbeer (51) the night before he departs for Berlin. Among those present are Frédéric Chopin (32), Gaetano Donizetti (45), Adolphe Adam (39), and Heinrich Heine. Those sending messages include George Sand, Eugéne Scribe and Daniel Auber (60).
December 24, 1842: Giacomo Meyerbeer departs Paris for Berlin to take up duties as Generalmusikdirektor.
December 25, 1842: A battle in Mier, Mexico between Texan raiders and Mexican defenders costs the lives of 600 Mexicans and 30 Texans. Unaware of the relative losses, the Texans surrender.
December 29, 1842: Hector Berlioz’ (39) ballade La belle voyageuse for mezzo-soprano and orchestra to words of Moore translated by Gounet is performed for the first time, in Stuttgart directed by the composer.
December 31, 1842: Der Wildschütz, oder Die Stimme der Natur, a komische Oper by Albert Lortzing (41) to his own words after Kotzebue, is performed for the first time, in Leipzig Stadttheater. It is wildly successful.