beethoven_septet harmony

Beethoven Septet 1st Movement
What harmonic procedures are used in the development section of the Septet?
The 1st movement of the septet is in sonata form and we would expect the development to pass through a
variety of keys.
The Exposition ended in bar 1111 with a modulation to the dominant, B flat major, which is a standard
destination of Sonata Form movements at this point (assuming they begin in a major key) The
development lasts from the end of bar 111 (upbeat to 112) until bar 153.
When the development begins Beethoven states the quaver anacrustic figure of the 1st subject in unison
(except for the horn which has a low concert Bb). This motif rises through a dominant 7th of E flat
major (Bb, D, F, Ab) but when it falls again it returns to a B natural. This broken chord (Ab F, D, B) is
a diminished 7th (VII7) of C minor, the relative minor. Beethoven establishes C minor firmly by using C
and F# to arrive on G - the dominant note of C minor. However, it is clear from the context that we are
in the dominant of C minor and not in G major; Beethoven quickly cadences in C minor at 117.
The following chord progression is used in bars 118 to 120: | I | II7b | V(7) | I |. It supports the
melodic idea from the codetta.
The progression is repeated in A flat major (the submediant) in bars 121 to 124. This is known as a
harmonic sequence (and, of course it accompanies a melodic sequence too!). The music stays in A flat
major until 128.
At 129 BB uses the progression again in bars 129 to 132 this time in F minor where the music stays until
bar 135.
Bar 136 is I in F minor and II in E flat major (pivot chord) followed by V7b of E flat and I, then VIIb
and I in B flat major which is achieved by bar 140.
A pedal note commences in 140 (viola) and, in fact, bars 140 to 153 are all dominant preparation for the
Recapitulation at 154. However, in 140 the Bb is a Tonic pedal of Bb major to be accurate, only
becoming a dominant pedal of E flat in bar 141 when the clarinet has a (concert) A flat.
The anacrustic figure of 3 quavers is used to drive the music forward, but also to reiterate the dominant
note (and lower auxiliary) rhythmically. It is taken up by the ‘cello, viola, bassoon and clarinet in bars
148 to 150 as they and the double bass (playing crotchets) outline a dominant 7th (broken) chord which
rises and falls during 148 to 153.
This brief development behaves in a polite way! It uses closely related keys and clear (sequential)
modulations. There is a long and effective dominant preparation before the recapitulation. The subject
material Beethoven uses is ideal for modulation. The opening of the 1st subject outlines a chord and it is
a simple matter to manipulate this chord in order to change key.
Beethoven’s harmony is based on roots and 1st inversions; the harmony is functional (it defines keys)
and 7th chords are used to help pull the music is the required direction. Although Classical in nature, the
keys used do suggest the 3rd relationships enjoyed by Romantic composers in later years. We pass
through Eb (111-114), Cm (115-120), Ab (121-128) and Fm (129-136). These keys are established with
firm perfect (V - I) cadences.
On the next page is a harmonic analysis of the Develoment