Work: Ave verum corpus in D major, K 618
About This Work
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) composed his final motet Ave Verum Corpus in D major, K. 618, in the spring of June 1791 for a schoolmaster in Baden near Vienna. It was his first sacred work since the unfinished Mass in C minor of 1781. Setting
the four-line Catholic communion hymn for four-part chorus, strings, and organ in a simple yet sublime 46 bars, Mozart's Ave Verum Corpus was also his last completed sacred work as he did not live long enough to complete his Requiem. But with its severe serenity, the motet is transcendentally glorious, and in its final line, "Be for us a foretaste of the trial of death," the work achieves the sense of the eternal and the infinite that the Requiem never attains.
-- James Leonard
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