Ludwig's love

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The Independent Online
MICHAEL White, states that Unsterbliche Geliebte in Beethoven's love letter "strictly translates as `Eternally Beloved' " ("An Amadeus for Ludwig", 19 March). This is not so. Unsterbliche is an adjective whose feminine ending agrees with the noun Geliebte and, translated literally, is "immortal" (from the verb sterben, to die). "Eternally Beloved" would be Ewig Geliebte.

Beethoven not only thought of his Beloved as immortal, but, like Shakespeare's Dark Lady, she has proved to be so, and for similar reasons.

Doreen Stanfield

London NW5

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