This beautiful and popular piece of music has a peculiar history. It started out as Prelude No. 1 in C major in Book I of The Well-Tempered Clavier 1722. A hundred and thirty years later, Charles Gounod improvised upon this piece; his former teacher and father in law Pierre Zimmermann arranged this improvisation for violin and piano and published it in 1853 Méditation sur le Premier Prélude de Piano de S. Bach, still as a purely instrumental piece. It was not until 1859 that Jacques Léopold Heugel printed it with the text of the Latin prayer.

4 thoughts on “Johann Sebastian Bach’s Ave Maria

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