My wife coming in at that moment and finding me with a discomposed face, exclaimed: "Some new misfortune? Courage!"
"No, no, quite the contrary."
"Paganini has sent me20,000 francs."
Hector Berlioz was 35 at the time of the gift he thus described in his memoirs; Nicolò Paganini was 56, a cancer-ridden invalid no longer bewitching the public with his Guarnerius. But to Paganini, "Beethoven had at last a successor" in Berlioz, and the gift was an invitation to "write more divine compositions." Berlioz obliged with one of his most stunning worksthe long "Dramatic Symphony," Romeo...