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

January 1, 1883 – December 31, 1883

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January 4, 1883: The first issue of Life magazine is published.
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January 6, 1883: Nocturne in B major for orchestra by Antonín Dvorák (41) is performed for the first time, in Prague, conducted by the composer.
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January 6, 1883: Two songs by Gabriel Fauré (37) are performed for the first time, by the Société National de Musique, Paris: Chant d’automne op.5/1 to words of Beaudelaire, and Le Secret op.23/3 to words of Silvestre.
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January 10, 1883: Gustav Mahler (22) receives a telegram in Vienna announcing his appointment as Kapellmeister at the Stadttheater in Olmütz (Olomouc).
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January 12, 1883: Thalia, an overture by George Whitefield Chadwick (28), is performed for the first time, in the Music Hall, Boston, directed by the composer.
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January 13, 1883: Franz Liszt (71) departs Venice, where he has spent two months with Richard (69) and Cosima Wagner, for Budapest. It is the last time the two men will see each other.
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January 13, 1883: An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen is performed for the first time, in Christiania (Oslo).
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January 13, 1883: During an evening performance of Circus Ferroni in Berdyczów, Russian Poland (Berdychiv, Ukraine), fire breaks out in a nearby stable. The official figure is 268 people killed, although some reports reach as high as 430.
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January 14, 1883: Gustav Mahler (22) conducts his first rehearsal with the opera in Olmütz. He is met with hostility from all sides but calmly demands that everyone follow his instructions. They do.
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January 16, 1883: Gustav Mahler (22) gives his first performance as opera director in Olmütz, Les Huguenots of Giacomo Meyerbeer (†18).
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January 22, 1883: Overture on Greek Themes op.3 for orchestra by Alyeksandr Glazunov (17) is performed for the first time, in St. Petersburg, conducted by Anton Rubinstein (53).
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January 23, 1883: Gustave Doré dies in Paris at the age of 51.
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January 23, 1883: Spannung op.84/5, a song by Johannes Brahms (49) to traditional words, is performed for the first time, in Basel.
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January 24, 1883: Friedrich von Flotow dies in Darmstadt at the age of 70.
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January 29, 1883: Clément Armand Fallières replaces Charles Théodore Eugène Duclerc as Prime Minister of France.
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January 29, 1883: Rasch in der That op.409, a polka schnell by Johann Strauss (57), is performed for the first time, in the Sophiensaal, Vienna.
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February 1, 1883: Lt. Col. Gustave Borgnis-Desbordes and his military expedition reach Bamako on the Niger River. He establishes French control there.
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February 3, 1883: Direct rail service from New Orleans to San Francisco is inaugurated by the Southern Pacific Railroad.
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February 3, 1883: Romance for violin and piano op.28 by Gabriel Fauré (37) is performed for the first time, by the Société National de Musique, Paris.
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February 5, 1883: The French Middle Congo Territory is created west of the Congo River.
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February 7, 1883: A week after his arrival, French Lt. Col. Gustave Borgnis-Desbordes begins building Fort Bamako.
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February 8, 1883: Sulla Riva for voice and piano by Pietro Mascagni (19) is performed for the first time, at Istituto Musicale Luigi Cherubini, Livorno.
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February 8, 1883: Arthur Sullivan (40), WS Gilbert, and Richard D’Oyly Carte sign a five-year contract in London. Gilbert and Sullivan will receive one-third of the profits from their operettas, after expenses and annual rental.
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February 11, 1883: The middle two movements of the Symphony no.6 by Anton Bruckner (58) are performed for the first time, in Vienna. The audience, which includes Johannes Brahms (49), gives the work a great ovation. The press is mixed. See 26 February 1899.
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February 12, 1883: Cosima Liszt von Bülow Wagner makes the last entry in her diary.
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February 13, 1883: 15:30 Wilhelm Richard Wagner dies in the Palazzo Loredan Vendramin Calergi on the Grand Canal, in Venice, Kingdom of Italy, of a heart attack, in the arms of his wife, aged 69 years, eight months, and 22 days. His Venetian doctor, Friedrich Keppler, writes, “It is self-evident that the innumerable psychichal agitations to which Wagner was daily disposed by his peculiar mental constitution and disposition, his sharply defined attitude towards a number of burning questions of art, science, and politics, and his remarkable social position did much to hasten his unfortunate end.” Jacques Manheit, a baritone in the Olmütz opera, will recall “...just as I was going from my home to the theatre, I saw a man running through the streets; he was quite distraught, sobbed loudly, and pressed his handkerchief against his eyes; I recognized Mahler (22) with difficulty...I went up to him anxiously and asked him quietly, ‘In heaven’s name, has something happened to your father?’’ ‘Worse, worse, much worse,’ he howled at the top of his voice: ‘the worst, the worst has happened, the Master has died.’...After that it was impossible to talk to Mahler for days. He came to the theatre for rehearsals and performances, but was inaccessible to everybody for a long time.”
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February 14, 1883: Samuel Benjamin is appointed the first US minister to Persia.
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February 14, 1883: Sulle rive di Chiaja for piano by Pietro Mascagni (19) is performed for the first time, at the Istituto Musicale Luigi Cherubini, Livorno.
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February 14, 1883: More than 24 hours after the death of Richard Wagner, Cosima Wagner is persuaded by family members to let go of his body. He died in her arms yesterday, in Venice. Anton Bruckner (58) is at the Vienna Conservatory when he hears of the death of Richard Wagner. Currently composing the adagio movement of his Symphony no.7, he concludes the work with funeral music in honor of his mentor.

Upon hearing the news of Wagner’s death, Hugo Wolf (22) plays the funeral march from Götterdämmerung, then spends the rest of the day in a tree crying.

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February 15, 1883: The new Tsar, Alyeksandr III, appoints Mily Balakirev (46) as Director of the Imperial Kapella.
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February 15, 1883: On hearing of the death of Richard Wagner, Giuseppe Verdi (69) writes to his publisher, “It is a great individual who has disappeared! A name that leaves a powerful imprint on the history of art!” (Barker, 284)
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February 16, 1883: Leos Janácek’s (28) superior and father-in-law, Emilian Schulz, asks the Brünn (Brno) Regional School Council to begin disciplinary proceedings against him. Among the charges are rudeness, taking time off without permission, not completing his duties and “nationalist fanaticism giving an impression of madness.” Janácek is also in the middle of divorce proceedings with Schulz’s daughter. No action will be taken against him as the Council will judge it a family dispute.
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February 16, 1883: The Captive in the Caucasus, an opera by Cesar Cui (48) to words of Krilov after Pushkin, is performed for the first time, in the Mariinsky Theatre, St. Petersburg.
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February 16, 1883: Spanisches Lied op.6/1 by Johannes Brahms (49) to anonymous words translated by Heyse, is performed for the first time, in Vienna, 31 years after it was composed.
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February 16, 1883: The body of Richard Wagner is placed on a train in Venice for Bayreuth, accompanied by his wife and family.
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February 18, 1883: The earthly remains of Richard Wagner are laid to rest near his home, Wahnfried, near Bayreuth. After the mourners depart, Cosima Wagner enters the open grave and lays down on the coffin. Family members find her and escort her back to the house.
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February 19, 1883: Jules Ferry replaces Clément Armand Fallières as Prime Minister of France.
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February 22, 1883: In Budapest, Franz Liszt (71) writes to Edward MacDowell (22), thanking him for sending his recently published piano suites opp.10 and 14, calling them “excellent.” He also accepts MacDowell’s dedication of his Piano Concerto to him.
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February 22, 1883: Angelus! Prière aux anges gardiens in the version for string quintet by Franz Liszt (71) is performed for the first time, in Prague.
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February 23, 1883: Five songs by Johannes Brahms (49) are performed for the first time, in Vienna: Therese op.86/1 to words of Keller, Feldeinsamkeit op.86/2 to words of Allmers, Nachtwandler op.86/3 to words of Kalbeck, Mädchenlied op.85/3 to traditional words, and In Waldeseinsamkeit op.85/6 to words of Lemcke.
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March 1, 1883: The choral version of Frühlingstimmen op.410 by Johann Strauss (57) is performed for the first time, in Theater an der Wien, Vienna.
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March 2, 1883: Emilian Schulz and his daughter, Zdenka Janáckova, go to the apartment of Leos Janácek (28) to pick up furniture and other items awarded her by the divorce court. Schulz and Janácek come to blows and the police are summoned and remain until Zdenka’s things are removed.
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March 3, 1883: The US Congress authorizes funds for the building of three steel cruisers to enhance the naval fleet.
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March 3, 1883: Gopak from Act I of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s (42) unperformed opera Mazepa is performed for the first time, in Moscow. See 15 February 1884.
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March 5, 1883: Henry VIII, an opéra by Camille Saint-Saëns (47) to words of Détroyat and Silvestre, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Opéra.
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March 7, 1883: At the request of newly appointed Director of the Imperial Kapella Mily Balakirev (46), Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (38) is appointed Assistant Director.
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March 8, 1883: La naissance de Venus op.29 for solo voices, chorus, and piano by Gabriel Fauré (37) to words of Collin, is performed for the first time, in Paris. The orchestra part is taken by three pianos, two of which are played by the composer and César Franck (60).
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March 14, 1883: Karl Marx dies penniless in London at the age of 65.
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March 15, 1883: Irish-American terrorists attempt to blow up The Times office and the London Local Government Board.
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March 18, 1883: The instrumental version of Frühlingstimmen op.410 by Johann Strauss (57) is performed for the first time, in the Musikverein, Vienna.
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March 19, 1883: Tamara, a symphonic poem by Mily Balakirev (46), is performed for the first time, at the Free School of Music, St. Petersburg. He also conducts the premiere of Second Overture on Greek Themes op.6 by Alyeksandr Glazunov (18).
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March 19, 1883: Josef Hauer is born at Lange Gasse 23 in Wiener Neustadt, Austro-Hungarian Empire, the son of Matthias Hauer, a prison supervisor. He will add the middle name Matthias later.
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March 20, 1883: The Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property is agreed to by eleven nations in Paris. It goes into effect 7 July 1884.
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March 22, 1883: Il sabato del villaggio, a cantata by Ferruccio Busoni (16) to words of Leopardi, is performed for the first time, in Teatro comunale, Bologna.
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March 27, 1883: Gabriel Fauré (37) marries Marie Fremiet, daughter of a sculptor, in the town hall of the 16th arrondissement, Paris.
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March 31, 1883: Ernest Chausson’s (28) symphonic poem Viviane is performed for the first time, by the Société National de Musique, in the Salle Erard, Paris. The work arouses no interest on the part of the public. Also on the program is the premiere of César Franck’s (60) symphonic poem Le chasseur maudit.
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April 4, 1883: Representatives from Queensland raise the British flag at Port Moresby, annexing New Guinea. The British government will disavow this action.
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April 6, 1883: Hugo Wolf (23) plays through some of his songs for Franz Liszt (71), now visiting Vienna. The older master pronounces delight in what he hears.
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April 9, 1883: An agent for the German merchant Adolf Lüderitz lands a Angra Pequeña (Lüderitz, Namibia). He buys the area from the local chief and begins setting up the first German settlement in what will become German Southwest Africa.
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April 9, 1883: Karol Olszewski and Zygmunt Wroblewski of the Jagiellonian University, Krakow report to the Academy of Science in Paris that they have produced measurable amounts of liquefied oxygen.
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April 14, 1883: Lakmé, an opéra by Léo Delibes (47) to words of Gondinet and Gille after Lotti, is performed for the first time, at the Opéra-Comique, Paris.
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April 15, 1883: Grand Duke Friedrich Franz II of Mecklenburg-Schwerin dies in Schwerin and is succeeded by his son Friedrich Franz III.
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April 16, 1883: Scherzo capriccioso for orchestra by Antonín Dvorák (41) is performed for the first time, in Prague.
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April 18, 1883: Leos Janácek (28) writes a long letter to the Brno Regional School Board refuting accusations against him by his father-in-law Emilian Schulz. He also repeats his request for a transfer saying he can no longer work with Schulz.
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April 19, 1883: At a conference in Wiesbaden, German pathologist Edwin Klebs first describes the bacterium which causes diphtheria.
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April 19, 1883: The Transit of Venus, a march by John Philip Sousa (28), is performed for the first time, in Washington, conducted by the composer.
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April 23, 1883: Jan Heemskerk replaces Constantijn Theodoor, Count van Lynden van Sandenburg as chief minister of the Netherlands.
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April 25, 1883: Radway’s Ready Relief for male chorus by John Knowles Paine (44) to a contemporary advertisement for a patent medicine, is performed for the first time, in Boston, 20 years after it was composed.
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April 29, 1883: If ye then be risen with Christ, an anthem for chorus and organ by Charles Villiers Stanford (30) to words from the Bible, is performed for the first time, in Trinity College Chapel, Cambridge.
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April 30, 1883: Edouard Manet dies in Paris at the age of 51.
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May 1, 1883: The Organic Law of Egypt is promulgated creating a Provincial Council, Legislative Council, General Assembly, and Council of State. Britain retains final control.
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May 2, 1883: The Nativity op.38, a cantata by John Knowles Paine (44) to words of Milton, is performed for the first time, in Boston. It is very successful.
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May 3, 1883: Arthur Sullivan (40) receives a letter from Prime Minister Gladstone offering him a knighthood. He will accept.
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May 5, 1883: Louis Viardot, husband of Pauline Viardot (61), dies in their home at Bougival, at the age of 83.
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May 7, 1883: The Royal College of Music is officially opened in London by the Prince of Wales. The Prince takes the occasion to publicly announce a knighthood for Arthur Sullivan (40).
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May 7, 1883: String Quintet by Anton Bruckner (59) is performed completely for the first time, in the Bösendorfersaal, Vienna. See 17 November 1881.
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May 9, 1883: Stephanus Johannes Paulus Kruger becomes the first President of the South African Republic.
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May 12, 1883: Life on the Mississippi by Mark Twain is published simultaneously in Boston and London.
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May 13, 1883: To celebrate his 41st birthday, Arthur Sullivan has an elaborate telephone system installed in his home so his dinner guests may hear selections from Iolanthe sung by the opera company hired specifically for this purpose. Among the guests are the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Edinburgh, WS Gilbert, and Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild.
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May 14, 1883: Joe Brady is hanged in Kilmainham Jail, one of five men killed for the Phoenix Park murders of 6 May 1882.
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May 17, 1883: Swedish chemistry student Svante Arrhenius discovers the “dissociation theory.” It earns him the lowest possible passing grade for his doctoral thesis. It will later earn him a Nobel Prize.
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May 18, 1883: Daniel Curley is hanged in Kilmainham Jail, one of five men killed for the Phoenix Park murders of 6 May 1882.
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May 19, 1883: William “Buffalo Bill” Cody opens his first Wild West Show, in Omaha, Nebraska.
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May 22, 1883: Arthur Sullivan (41) is knighted at Windsor Castle by Queen Victoria.
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May 22, 1883: Gustav Mahler (22) arrives in Kassel for a week long trial as conductor.
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May 23, 1883: Alphons Diepenbrock (20) successfully completes a bachelor’s degree in classical literature at the University of Amsterdam.
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May 24, 1883: The Brooklyn Bridge, connecting the cities of Brooklyn and New York, opens. It is the first steel wire suspension bridge. Five people are trampled to death in the excitement.
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May 27, 1883: Moscow, a coronation cantata by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (43) to words of Maykov, is performed for the first time, for the coronation of Tsar Alyeksandr III in the Kremlin.
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May 28, 1883: Michael Fagan is hanged in Kilmainham Jail, one of five men killed for the Phoenix Park murders of 6 May 1882.
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May 30, 1883: A rumor that the Brooklyn Bridge is about to collapse causes a stampede. At least twelve people are killed and 35 injured.
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May 31, 1883: Gustav Mahler (22) signs a contract making him Royal Music and Choral Director in Kassel.
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June 1, 1883: War begins between France and Madagascar. French forces land at Tamatave to counter growing British influence in the region.
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June 2, 1883: Thomas Caffrey is hanged in Kilmainham Jail, one of five men killed for the Phoenix Park murders of 6 May 1882.
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June 4, 1883: Festival Coronation March by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (43) is performed for the first time, in Sokolniki Park, Moscow.
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June 7, 1883: Through the efforts of his father, Isaac Albéniz (23) is discharged from the reserves, just two weeks before his wedding.
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June 7, 1883: Who is the King of Glory? for chorus by Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov (39) to words of the Psalms is performed for the first time, at the consecration of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in St. Petersburg.
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June 8, 1883: By the Convention of Marsa, France establishes a protectorate over Tunisia.
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June 9, 1883: Symphonic Suite for orchestra by Ferruccio Busoni (17) is performed for the first time, in Trieste.
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June 9, 1883: Tim Kelly is hanged in Kilmainham Jail, one of five men killed for the Phoenix Park murders of 6 May 1882.
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June 10, 1883: Croatian engineer Nikola Tesla demonstrates his newly invented alternating current induction motor to potential investors in Strasbourg. They are unimpressed.
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June 10, 1883: Sängerbund for male chorus by Anton Bruckner (59) is performed for the first time, in Wels.
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June 12, 1883: Symphony no.2 by Hubert Parry (35) is performed for the first time, in Cambridge. It is enthusiastically received.
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June 13, 1883: Carl Johan Thyselius replaces Arvid Rutger Fredrikson Posse as Prime Minister of Sweden.
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June 14, 1883: Rail service between Sydney and Melbourne begins.
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June 14, 1883: Oxford University confers an honorary doctorate on Charles Villiers Stanford (30).
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June 15, 1883: Under the direction of Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, the Reichstag passes the Health Insurance Act. Health insurance for workers is now mandatory and to be paid for by the worker and his employer. He is trying to make socialism less attractive.
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June 16, 1883: 2,000 children, assembled for an entertainment in Victoria Hall, Sunderland, surge for the exits after the performance. With egress limited to one person at a time a crush ensues. 183 children are killed with many injured.
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June 17, 1883: Greetings to the Singers EG 170 for male chorus by Edvard Grieg (40) to words of Skavlan is performed for the first time, in Trondheim.
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June 20, 1883: Ernest Chausson (28) marries Jeanne Escudier, a pianist, in Église Saint-Augustin, Paris. They will honeymoon in Bayreuth.
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June 22, 1883: Claude Debussy (20) wins the second grand prix de Rome for his setting of the cantata Le Gladiateur.
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June 23, 1883: Zwei Gesänge für Gemischten Chor by Horatio Parker (19) are performed for the first time, in Munich.
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June 23, 1883: Le Gladiateur, Claude Debussy’s (20) prix de Rome entry and winner of the first Second Grand Prix, is performed for the first time, at the Paris Conservatoire.
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June 23, 1883: Isaac Albéniz (23) marries his piano student Rosina Jordana Lagarriga, daughter of a prominent businessman, in the church of Mare de Déu de la Mercè, Barcelona.
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June 28, 1883: The first electric power plant in Europe begins operating in Milan. It produces four kilowatts.
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July 3, 1883: With about 200 workmen on board, the SS Daphne is launched into the Clyde River in Glasgow. It promptly heaves over and sinks, taking at least 124 people with her.
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July 9, 1883: An advertisement appears in Le ménestrel, Paris, announcing the services of one Roger Leoncavallo (26) as a pianist, accompanist, or librettist.
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July 14, 1883: Capriccio sinfonico by Giacomo Puccini (24) is performed for the first time, at the Milan Conservatory.
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July 16, 1883: Giacomo Puccini (24) leaves the Milan Conservatory, opting not to take an extra year.
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July 22, 1883: Zulu rebels, backed by some Boers, attack King Cetshwayo in Ulundi. The King escapes with his life.
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July 25, 1883: Alfredo Casella is born at via Cavour 41 in Turin, the only child of Carlo Casella, a professional cellist, and Maria Bordino, daughter of a steward.
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July 28, 1883: An earthquake destroys the town of Casamicciola on the Italian island of Ischia. 2,000-3,000 people are killed, including many tourists.
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July 29, 1883: James Carey is shot to death on board ship just before it arrives in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. He is killed by Patrick O’Donnell for testifying against five men hanged earlier this year for the Phoenix Park killings of 6 May 1882. O’Donnell is arrested and will be returned to England.
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August 3, 1883: The Philharmonic Society of London invites Antonín Dvorák (41) to England to produce an orchestral “suite or overture.”
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August 7, 1883: The Boer entities of Stellaland and Goshen are joined to form the United States of Stellaland.
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August 11, 1883: During the visit of about 40 leading French artists and scientists to Budapest, Jules Massenet (41) conducts his Scènes pittoresques and portions of Hérodiade. As he arrives at the podium for the latter, he finds instead a copy of Coppélia and has to conduct Hérodiade from memory. Later, when Léo Delibes (47) conducts Coppélia, he finds a copy of Hérodiade.
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August 21, 1883: Gustav Mahler (23) arrives in Kassel to take up duties as assistant conductor.
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August 25, 1883: By the Treaty of Hué, France establishes a protectorate over Annam and Tonkin.
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August 26, 1883: The volcano of Krakatau, between the islands of Sumatra and Java, explodes over the next three days. Blasts are heard 3,500 km away in Australia. Over 20,000,000 cubic meters of earth are blown into the air to a height of 80 km. Tsunamis as high as 35 meters kill 35,000 people. Pressure waves are felt around the planet.
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August 30, 1883: Alphons Diepenbrock (20) joins the new Wagner (†0) Society in Amsterdam.
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September 4, 1883: Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev dies in Paris at the age of 64.
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September 4, 1883: The Glories of Our Blood and State, an ode for chorus and orchestra by Hubert Parry (35) to words of Shirley, is performed for the first time, in Gloucester. The composer records, “Public not much taken with it apparently.”
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September 8, 1883: A golden spike is driven at Gold Creek, Montana, 100 km west of Helena, completing the Northern Pacific rail link from St. Paul to Seattle.
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September 11, 1883: After crashing through the Bahamas, a hurricane comes ashore in North Carolina and moves into Virginia. Through the length of the storm, 106 people are killed.
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September 18, 1883: Dragan Kiriakov Tsankov replaces Leonid Nikolayevich Sobolev as Prime Minister of Bulgaria.
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September 19, 1883: Gustav Mahler (23) makes his conducting debut in Kassel with Giacomo Meyerbeer’s (†19) Robert le diable.
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September 30, 1883: Prince Aleksandur of Bulgaria restores the constitution of 1879, simultaneously sacking Russian ministers.
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October 3, 1883: Eine Nacht in Venedig, an operetta by Johann Strauss (57) to words of Zell and Genée after Cormon and Carré, is performed for the first time, in the Friedrich-Wilhelmstädtisches Theater, Berlin. The work elicits a chorus of boos and catcalls from the audience.
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October 4, 1883: The Orient Express begins its first run from Paris to Constantinople.
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October 7, 1883: Introito, Alleluja, and Sanctus by Pietro Mascagni (19) are performed for the first time, in the Church of Santa Caterina, Livorno.
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October 10, 1883: Ferruccio Busoni (17) and his father arrive in Vienna for a second time to try to make a reputation with the Viennese public.
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October 11, 1883: In an attempt to gain a reputation as composer as well as pianist, Ferruccio Busoni (17) goes to see Hans Richter, the conductor of the Vienna Philharmonic, with the score to his Symphonic Suite. After six tries he is allowed in. Richter promises to try it out with the orchestra.
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October 13, 1883: Nikola Hristic replaces Milan Pirocanac as Prime Minister of Serbia. King Milan appoints Hristic even though his party received only 30% of the vote in recent election while the Peoples Radicals of Nikola Pasic received 54%.
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October 13, 1883: José de Posada Herrera replaces Práxedes Mateo-Sagasta Escolar as Prime Minister of Spain.
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October 14, 1883: Concerto for violin and orchestra in a op.53 by Antonín Dvorák (42) is performed for the first time, in the Rudolfinum, Prague.
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October 15, 1883: The Supreme Court of the United States decides five cases, holding that the Civil Rights Act of 1875 is unconstitutional. Congress may not protect blacks from discriminatory practices of individuals.
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October 20, 1883: By the Treaty of Ancón, Peru cedes Tarapacá Province to Chile in perpetuity and sovereignty over Tacna and Arica provinces for ten years, at which time a plebiscite of the inhabitants will decide their future.
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October 21, 1883: Six Studies for piano by Ferruccio Busoni (17) are performed for the first time, in Graz by the composer.
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October 21, 1883: When troops attempt to disarm peasants a revolt breaks out in the Timok region of Serbia. Today sees a battle at Lukovo. The revolt will be quashed within ten days.
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October 22, 1883: A Cello Sonata in A op.36 by Edvard Grieg (40) is performed for the first time, in Dresden, the composer at the piano.
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October 22, 1883: The Metropolitan Opera House opens in New York with a production of Faust by Charles Gounod (65). This is the first permanent opera company in the United States.
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October 23, 1883: Victor Herbert (24) performs as soloist in his Suite for cello and orchestra op.3 in Stuttgart. The audience asks that one movement be repeated.
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October 24, 1883: Amy Marcy Cheney (16) makes her public performing debut as one of several soloists at the Boston Music Hall. She performs a Rondo in E flat by Chopin (†34) and Moscheles’ Piano Concerto in g minor. Critics are effusive in their praise.
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October 27, 1883: Trio for piano and strings op.65 by Antonín Dvorák (42) is performed for the first time, in Mladá Boleslav, 50 km northeast of Prague.
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October 30, 1883: An alliance between Austria-Hungary and Romania is concluded and acceded to by Germany later in the day.
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October 30, 1883: Two Fenian bombs explode in the London Underground. Sixty people are injured.
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November 3, 1883: British-Egyptian forces are attacked by the Sudanese followers of the Mahdi at El Obeid (al Ubayyid) in Kordofan.
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November 4, 1883: España, a rhapsody for orchestra by Emanuel Chabrier (42), is performed for the first time, by the Société des Nouveaux Concerts, Paris.
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November 4, 1883: Lagunen-Walzer op.411 by Johann Strauss (58) is performed for the first time, in the Musikverein, Vienna.
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November 5, 1883: After two days of fighting, the British-Egyptian defenders of El Obeid (al Ubayyid), Sudan are overrun by followers of the Mahdi. Almost all the Europeans are killed. Only about 500 Egyptians return home. Great Britain will decide to evacuate the Sudan.
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November 8, 1883: Sulamith, a biblical representation by Anton Rubinstein (53) to words of Rodenberg after the Bible, is performed for the first time, in the Hamburg Dammtortheater. Performed the same evening is Rubinstein’s comic opera Unter Räubern to words of Wichert after Gautier. The composer directs both.
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November 8, 1883: 08:30 Arnold Edward Trevor Bax is born at Heath Villa, Angles Road, Streatham, Surrey, United Kingdom, the first of four children born to Alfred Ridley Bax, a barrister and antiquarian, and Charlotte Ellen Lea, daughter of a Congregational minister and missionary.
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November 14, 1883: Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson is published in book form. It has already been serialized.
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November 15, 1883: Thomas Edison receives a US patent for a voltage regulator.
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November 16, 1883: Charles Martin Loeffler (22) performs as violin soloist for the first time with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He plays Benjamin Godard’s Concerto romantique.
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November 18, 1883: Standard Time goes into operation in Canada and the United States.
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November 18, 1883: The Hussite Overture by Antonín Dvorák (42) is performed for the first time, in Prague at the reopening of the National Theatre. As with the opening of the first theatre two years ago, the opera performed is Smetana’s (59) nationalistic Libuse.  Smetana is present but can not hear the music due to his deafness.
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November 19, 1883: Incidental music to Calderón de la Barca’s play Der Richter von Zalamea by Engelbert Humperdinck (29) is performed for the first time, in the Stadttheater, Cologne.
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November 26, 1883: Charles Martin Loeffler (22) becomes a citizen of the United States in a Boston district court.
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November 27, 1883: Incidental music to Aristophanes’ play The Birds by Hubert Parry (35) is performed for the first time, at the University of Cambridge.
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November 28, 1883: Concertouvertüre in c minor by Richard Strauss (19) is performed for the first time, in Munich.
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December 1, 1883: The third version of Symphony no.1 “Winter Daydreams” by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (43) is performed for the first time, in Moscow. See 15 February 1868.
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December 2, 1883: Symphony no.3 by Johannes Brahms (50) is performed for the first time, in the Musikverein, Vienna. The work is a triumph. There is organized hissing by the Wagner Club at the end of every movement but this is drowned out by prolonged applause.
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December 3, 1883: The 48th Congress of the United States convenes in Washington. The Republican Party holds exactly half the Senate seats. Democrats hold a healthy majority in the House of Representatives.
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December 3, 1883: Anton Friedrich Wilhelm von Webern is born at Löwengasse 53a in Vienna, Austro-Hungarian Empire, the third of five children born to Carl von Webern, a mining engineer, and Amalie Antonia Geer, daughter of a master butcher.
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December 4, 1883: Rondo after C.M. von Weber for piano by Johannes Brahms (50) is performed for the first time, in Vienna.
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December 4, 1883: Eric Satie (17) enters the harmony class of Antoine Taudou as an auditor.
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December 7, 1883: String Quartet in G op. 4 by Arthur Foote (30) is performed for the first time, in Boston.
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December 8, 1883: The Rome Express from Calais to Nice to Rome goes into service.
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December 8, 1883: Cello Sonata in F op.6 by Richard Strauss (19) is performed for the first time, in the Hotel Goldner Adler, Nuremberg.
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December 10, 1883: Irish nationalist Patrick O’Donnell is hanged in Newgate Prison for the murder of informer James Carey last 29 July.
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December 13, 1883: WC Stockley’s orchestra gives the first performance of Intermezzo moresque by one of the orchestra’s violinists, Edward Elgar (26), in Birmingham Town Hall.
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December 15, 1883: Elégie op.24 for cello and piano by Gabriel Fauré (38) is performed publicly for the first time, by the Société National de Musique, Paris. On the same program, Trois valses romantiques for two pianos by Emanuel Chabrier (42) is performed for the first time, the composer at one keyboard.  See 21 June 1880 and 23 January 1902.
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December 16, 1883: The French Gabon Territory is created.
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December 20, 1883: Incidental music to Richepin’s play Nana-Sahib by Jules Massenet (41) is performed for the first time, in the Théâtre de la Porte Saint-Martin, Paris.
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December 21, 1883: Richard Strauss (19) arrives in Berlin where he will stay for over three months. Here he will make acquaintances with important musical people and promote his music.
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December 22, 1883: 16:00 Edgard Victor Achille Charles Varèse is born at 12 rue de Strasbourg (now rue Huit-Mai 1945) in the Tenth Arrondissement of Paris, Republic of France, the first of five children born to Henri Pie Jules Annibal Varèse, an engineer, and Blanche-Marie Cortot, daughter of a restaurant owner.
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December 29, 1883: France occupies the port of Obock (Djibouti) which it claimed in 1862.