[Giacomo Meyerbeer, German operatic composer.] Secretarial Letter (because of injury to his right arm) in French, Signed 'Meyerbeer', to instrument maker Raoul Allary, recommending the opera singer Louise Gned to a post.

Giacomo Meyerbeer [born Jakob Liebmann Meyer Beer] (1791-1864), German opera composer of Jewish extraction based in Paris [Raoul Allary, instrument maker; Louise Gned (b.1810), Austrian opera singer]
Publication details: 
'Paris, 15 Décembre 1853.' On his embossed armorial letterhead, with initals 'G M'.
SKU: 25295

Meyerbeer’s diary records (25 May 1853) a visit ‘from Raoul Allary, who makes wind instruments. He is an opponent of Sax, and came to me because he had heard that I had spoken to the emperor on Sax’s behalf’ (1999 English translation of volume for 1850-1856). A pencil note at the head of the present letter identifies the subject as ‘Louise Gned / 4 Rue [de] Bellefond [Paris]’. Gned (b.1810) was an Austrian soprano from a musical/theatrical family, who faded into obscurity. (Her sister Nina (1811-1874) was also an opera singer, and was married to the baritone Zacharias von Poißl.) Meyerbeer writes that he has just heard that there is a ‘place de Choriste vacante à Votre Châtre’, and takes the liberty of recommending to Allary’s attention ‘la personne qui Vous remettra ces lignes’. He describes her as ‘une excellente musicienne, ancienne prima donna qui a chanté sur les premiers théâtres d’Allemagne’. It is only by ‘des revers de fortune’ that she is at the moment reduced to applying for the ‘modeste position de Choriste’. He can personally guarantee that she is an ‘excellente musicienne et elle avoit aussi quand je l’ai entendue, une très belle voix’. As she is well-acquainted with the Italian language, and has also sung in Italian theatres, ‘elle pouvait encore être chargé de petits rôles’. He ends by explaining that his right arm has been troubling him for some weeks, and it this that has forced him to dictate the letter. From the autograph album of the novelist George Meredith's daughter Marie Eveleen (Mariette; 1871-1933), later the wife of Henry Parkman Sturgis (1847-1929), American-born banker and Liberal politician.