Sep 12, 2013

Carl Thomas Mozart's Original Baptismal Entry

Mozart's second child Carl Thomas was born on 21 September 1784 in the Trattnerhof on the Graben.

 The Trattnerhof in 1910 seen from the Spiegelgasse (A-Wn, Bildarchiv)

The entry concerning the baptism, published for the first time in 1919 by Emil Karl Blümml (and in 1961 only referred to by O. E. Deutsch), is based on the following document in the registers of the parish of St. Peter's Church in Vienna:

 The clean copy of Carl Thomas Mozart's baptismal entry (A-Wstm, St. Peter, Taufbuch Tom. 1, 92/1784)

Blümml's transcription of Carl Mozart's baptismal entry in his 1923 book Aus Mozarts Freundes- und Familienkreis.

Blümml's transcription contains four mistakes: 1) The abbreviation "Herbstm" on the far left does not mean "Herbstmond", but "Herbstmonat" (which arises from the printed header at the top of the column). 2) The current number "92" of the baptism is missing. 3) The word "Hebam" (midwife) below the child's name is missing as well, and 4) the abbreviation "M." in the mother's name does not mean "M(utter)", but "Maria". Blümml was also unaware of the fact that the document he copied was nothing but a later fair copy of the original 1784 entry. Only a small number of the old original baptismal registers of St. Peter's survive. Mozart scholarship was unaware of their existence until in 2006 I realized their significance and published the original entry concerning Theresia Mozart's baptism for the first time in my 2009 article "Mozart's Apartment on the Alsergrund" (and again in 2013 on this Blog). The original 1784 entry concerning Carl Thomas Mozart's baptism looks as follows:

[officiating priest] Joan[nes] Bapt:[ista] / Aigner Coop.[erator] / [date] 1784. / den 21 Septem[ber] / [address] Im Freysing[isch] Tratt / nerisch[en] Hause. / [the child's name] Karl Thomas. / [catholic, boy, legitimate] / [father] Wolfgang Amadäus / Mozhard. / Kapellmei= / ster / [mother] Maria Costanza / gebohrne Weber eines / Amtmannes Tochter. / [godparent] Joan: Thomas / Edler v / Trattnermpa / des Heil:[igen] / Rom:[ischen] Reichs / Ritter K.K. / Buchdrucker / und Buchführer
(A-Wstm, St. Peter, Taufbuch [original copy], Tom. 1, fol. 17)
This document shows that the mother's wrong family name "Ueber" in the clean copy, published by Blümml, was caused by a sloppy "W" in the original 1784 entry. The midwife – whose name is not given in the records – was most likely Francisca Sidler (1720-1797). She had already helped deliver Mozart's first son in 1783 and the Trattnerhof was located in her district.

 Johann Thomas von Trattner's autograph signature in the original 1784 baptismal entry.

Trattner's bust inside the Trattner family crypt in Wienerherberg

Until now nobody has ever asked the not so far-fetched question why Mozart's second son was named Carl. Why did Mozart not try to make up for his faux pas one year earlier, when he disappointed his father by naming his firstborn "Raimund Leopold" instead of "Leopold Raimund"? Hence "Leopold Thomas" would have been quite an obvious choice of names for the second child. Was Carl Mozart's eponym already Mozart's friend Carl Prince Lichnowsky, whose mother Maria Carolina, Princess Lichnowsky (1741-1800) was among the subscribers of Mozart's Trattnerhof concerts?

© Dr. Michael Lorenz 2013. All rights reserved.

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