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1. This sonata was composed during a time of great turmoil as Beethoven realized he was losing his hearing. During 1800-1802 he withdrew from society and even contemplated suicide.2. This sonata was dedicated to a 17-year-old pupil of his, a countess for whom biographers think he had great affection, perhaps even unrequited love.3. The name "Moonlight" was given after Beethoven's death by a poet who compared this slow movement to the glistening of Lake Lucerne in Switzerland.4. This sonata was one of Beethoven's most popular works during his lifetime, which frustrated the composer, who said "Surely I’ve written better things!"5. The sonata is unusual in that the first movement is slow (usually the first and third movements are fast, while the second movement is slow).
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