J.S. Bach

Timeline

Year Age Events in Bach's Life Contemporary Musicians
Source: "Bach" by Malcolm Boyd (Schirmer 1983, 1997)
1685
Johann Sebastian Bach born, 21 March, at Eisenach. Youngest child of Johann Ambrosius Bach, town and court musician, and his wife Maria Elisabetha, née Lämmerhirt. Baptised, 23 March. Handel born, 23 Feb
D. Scarlatti born, 26 Oct.
Albinoni aged 14
Biber 41
Blow 36
Böhm 24
G. Bononcini 15
Buxtehude 48
Caldara c. 15
Charpentier c40
Corelli 32
Couperin 17
Fux 25
Graupner 2
Heinichen 2
Keiser 11
Kerll 58
J.P. Krieger 36
Kuhnau 25
Lalande 28
Legrenzi 59
Lully 53
A. Marcello 1
Marchand 16
Mattheson 4
Pachelbel 32
Pasquini 48
Purcell 26
Rameau 2
Reincken 62
A. Scarlatti 25
Steffani 31
Telemann 4
Vivaldi 7
J.G. Walther 1
Zelenka 6.
1686 1
B. Marcello born,
24 July or 1 Aug
Porpora born, 17 Aug.
Sylvius Leopold Weiss
born, 21 Oct.
1687 2
Geminiani bapt. 5 Dec
Lully (54) dies, 22 March
Pisendel born, 26 Dec.
1688 3
Fasch born, 15 April.
1689 4
Boismortier born, 23 Dec.
1690 5
Legrenzi (63) dies, 17 May
1691 6

1692 7 Enters Lateinschule, Eisenach. Tartini born, 8 April.
1693 8
Kerll (65) dies, 13 Feb.
1694 9 Mother (50) dies, 1 May.
1695 10 Father (49) dies, 20 Feb. Bach leaves Eisenach to live with brother, Johann Christoph (24), in Ohrdruf. Enters lyceum there. Locatelii born, 3 Sept.
Purcell (36) dies, 21 Nov.
1696 11

1697 12
Leclair born, 10 May
Quantz born, 30 Jan.
1698 13

1699 14
Hasse bapt. 25 March
1700 15 Leaves Ohrdruf for Lüneburg. Enrols in Michaelisschule there. B.G. Sammartini born (or 1701)
1701 16

1702 17 Applies unsuccessfully for organist's post at Jakobirche, Sangerhausen
1703 18 Court musician at Weimar, March-Sept. Appointed organist at Neuekirche, Arnstadt, 9 Aug. C.H. Graun born (or 1704)
Harrer born, 8 May
1704 19
Biber (59) dies, 3 May
Charpentier (c.59) dies, 24 Feb.
1705 20 Granted 4 weeks leave of absence to visit Lübeck in ?Oct, but stays away longer.
1706 21 Returns to Arnstadt, Jan/Feb. Appears before the consistory to answer for length of absence. Martini born, 24 April
Pachelbel (52) buried, 9 March
1707 22 Appointed organist at Blasiuskirche, Mühlhausen, 15 June. Marries Marie Barbara Bach (23) at Dornheim, 17 Oct. Buxtehude (c.70) dies, 1 Oct.
1708 23 Appointed organist and chamber musician to Duke Wilhelm Ernst at Weimar, June. First child, Catharina Dorotheo, bapt. 29 Dec. Blow (59) dies, 1 Oct.
1709 24
F. Benda bapt., 22 Nov.
1710 25 Second child, Wilhelm Friedemann, born, 22 Nov. Arne bapt., 28 May
Pasquini (72) dies, 21 Nov.
Pergolesi born, 4 Jan.
1711 26
Boyce born, Sept.
1712 27

1713 28 Visits Weissenfels, Feb. Third and fourth children (twins), Johann Christoph and Maria Sophia, born 23 Feb, and die, 23 Feb and c.13 March. Bach competes for organist's post at Halle, Dec. Corelli (59) dies, 8 Jan
J.L. Krebs bapt., 12 Oct.
1714 29 Declines offer of Halle post, Feb, and is promoted to Konzertmeister at Weimar, 2 March. Fifth child, Carl Philipp Emanuel, born, 8 March. Gluck born, 2 July
Jommelli born, 10 Sept.
1715 30 Sixth child, Johann Gottfried Berhard, born, 11 May. Doles born, 23 April
Wagenseil born, 29 Jan.
1716 31 Examines new organs at Liebfrauenkirche, Halle, 29 April - 2 May, and Augustinerkirche, Erfurt, July.
1717 32 Appointed Kapellmeister to Prince Leopold at Cöthen, 5 Aug., but is at first prevented by Duke Wilhelm Ernst from taking up the post. Visits Dresden and accepts invitation to take part in contest with Marchand. Is imprisoned by Wilhelm Ernst, 6 Nov., but then allowed to leave Weimar, 2 Dec. Examines organ in Paulinerkirche, Leipzig, 16 Dec. J. Stamitz bapt., 19 June.
1718 33 Visits Karlsbad with Prince Leopold, May-June. Seventh child, Leopold Augustus, born, 15 Nov.
1719 34 Death of son, Leopold Augustus (10 months); buried, 29 Sept. L. Mozart born, 14 Nov.
1720 35 Visits Karlsbad, May-July. Wife (35) dies; buried 7 July. Bach visits Hamburg, Nov., and is offered post as organist at the Jakobikirche, which he declines. J.F. Agricola born, 4 Jan.
Altnikol bapt., 1 Jan.
1721 36 Brandenburg Concertos dedicated to Margrave Christian Ludwig, 24 March. Marries Anna Magdalena Wilcke (20) at Cöthen, 3 Dec. Prince Leopold (27) marries Frederica Henrietta von Anhalt-Bernburg (19) at Bernburg, 11 Dec. Kirnberger born, 24 April.
1722 37 Brother, Johann Jacob (40) dies, 16 April. Bach enters candidature for cantorate at Leipzig, Dec. G. Benda bapt., 30 June
Kuhnau (62) dies, 5 June
Reincken (99) dies, 24 Nov.
1723 38 Eighth child, Christina Sophia Henrietta, born. Bach signs contract as Thomaskantor in Leipzig, 5 May. Arrives in Leipzig with family, 22 May. Cantata 75 performed in Nikolaikirche, 30 May. Exaines organ at Störmthal, Nov. Magnificat (BWV243a) performed in Thomaskirche, 25 Dec. Gassmann born, 3 May.
1724 39 Ninth child, Gottfried Heinrich, born, 26 Feb. St. John Passion performed in Nikolaikirche, 7 April. Examines organ in Johanniskirche, Gera, 25 June.
1725 40 Tenth child, Christian Gottlieb, bapt., 14 April. Bach gives organ recitals in Sophienirche, Dresden, 19-20 Sept. Visits Cöthen, 15 Dec. J.P. Krieger (75) dies, 6 Feb
A. Scarlatti (65) dies, 22 Oct.
1726 41 Eleventh child, Elisabeth Juliana Friederika, bapt., 5 April. Daughter, Christiana Sophia Henrietta (3) dies, 29 June. Partita I (BWV 825) published, Michaelmas. Lalande (68) dies, 18 June.
1727 42 St. Mathew Passion performed in Thomaskirche, 11 April (?). Trauer Ode (BWV 198) performed, 17 Oct, at memorial ceremony for Electress Christiane Eberhardine (died, 4 Sept.). Bach's twelfth child, Ernestus Andreas, bapt., 30 Oct. dies, 1 Nov. Traetta born, 30 March.
1728 43 Son, Christian Gottlieb (3), dies, 21 Sept. Thirteenth child, Regina Johanna, bapt., 10 Oct. Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen (33) dies, 19 Nov. Bach's sister, Marie Salome Wiegand (née Bach) (51), dies in Erfurt, buried 27 Dec. Piccinni born, 16 Jan
Steffani (73) dies, 12 Feb.
1729 44 Bach visits Weissenfels, Feb. Visits Cöthen to perform funeral music for Prince Leopld, 23-4 March. St. Matthew Passion performed (for second? time) in Thomaskirche, 15 April. Disputes with council over admission of unmusical pupils to Thomasschule. Bach assumes direction of collegium musicum. Illness prevents his visiting Handel in Halle, June. Rektor of Thomasschule, J.H. Ernesti (77) dies, 16 Oct. Heinichen (46) dies, 16 July.
1730 45 Fourteenth child, Christiana Benedicta Louise, baptised, 1 Jan.; dies, 4 Jan.; Bach addresses memorandum on church music to town council, 23 Aug., and letter to Erdmann seeking possible employment in Gdansk, 28 Oct.. J.M. Gesner appointed Rektor of the Thomasschule, 8 Sept..
1731 46 Clavier-Übung I (BWV825-30) published. Fifteenth child, Christiana Dorothea, baptised, 18 March. St Mark Passion performed in Thomaskirche, 23 March. Bach gives organ recitals in Dresden, 14-21 Sept. Examines organ at Stöntzsch, 12 Nov. Cannabich bapt., 28 Dec.
1732 47 Sixteenth child, Johann Christoph Friedrich, born 21 June. Daughter, Christiana Dorothea (1), dies, 31 Aug. Bach examines organ in Martinskirche, Kassel, 22-8 Sept. Haydn born, 31 March;
Marchand (63) dies, 17 Feb.
1733 48 Daughter, Regina Johanna (4), dies 25 April. Son, Wilhelm Friedemann (23), appointed organist at Sophienkirche, Dresden, 23 June. Bach visits Dresden, July, and presents Missa (BWV232) to the Elector Friedrich August II. Seventeenth child, Johann August Abraham, bapt., 5 Nov; dies, 6 Nov. Böhm (71) dies, 18 May;
Couperin (64) dies, 11 Sept.
1734 49 J.A. Ernesti (27) appointed Rektor of the Thomasschule. Christmas Oratorio, parts I-III performed 25, 26, 27 Dec. Gossec born, 17 Jan.
1735 50 Christmas Oratoria, parts IV-VI performed, 1, 2, 6 Jan. Clavier-Übung II (BWV971, 831) published, May. Bach examines organ in Marienkirche, Mülhausen, June, where his son Gottfried Bernhard (20) is appointed organist, 16 June. Bach's eighteenth child, Johann Christian, born, 5 Sept.
1736 51 'Battle of the prefects' with Ernesti begins, July. Appointed Hofcompositeur to the Elector of Saxony, 19 Nov. Gives organ recital in Frauenkirche, Dresden, 1 Dec. Caldar (c.66) dies, 28 Dec; Pergolesi (26) dies, 16 March.
1737 52 Son, Johann Gottfried Bernhard (22), appointed organist at the Jakobikirche, Sangerhausen, 4 April. Bach temporarily relinquishes directorship of the collegium musicum, Spring. J.A. Schiebe publishes adverse criticism of Bach's music. Johann Elias Bach joins Bach's household as tutor and secretary, ?Oct. Nineteenth child, Johanna Carolina, bapt., 30 Oct. Myslivecek born, 9 March.
1738 53 Son, Carl Philipp Emanuel (24), appointed harpsichordist to crown prince Frederick of Prussia. Bach visits Dresden, May. Son, Johann Gottfried Bernhard (23) contracts debts at Sangerhausen and absconds.
1739 54 Son, Johann Gottfried Bernhard (24), dies, 27 May. Bach gives organ recital in the Schlosskirche, Altenburg. Clavier-Übung III published, Sept. Resumes as director of the collegium musicum, 2 Oct. Visits Weissenfels with Anna Magdalena, 7-14 Nov. Dittersdorf born, 2 Nov.; Keiser (65) dies, 12 Sept; B. Marcello (52/53) dies, 24/25 July; Vanhal born, 12 May.
1740 55 Visits Halle, April. Paisiello born, 9 May.
1741 56 Visits son, Carl Philipp Emanuel, in Berlin, Aug. Anna Magdalena seriously ill. Bach visits Dresden, Nov. Clavier-Übung IV published (or 1742). Fux (c.80) dies, 13 Feb.; Grétry born, 8 Feb.; Vivaldi (63) dies, 28 July.
1742 57 Twentieth child, Regina Susanna, bapt., 22 Feb. Johann Elias Bach leaves Leipzig, 31 Oct.
1743 58 Examines organ in Johanniskirche, Leipzig, Dec. Boccherini born, 19 Feb.
1744 59 Son, Carl Philipp Emanuel (30), marries Johanna Maria Dannemann (20) in Berlin.
1745 60 First grandchild, Johann August Bach, born, 10 Dec. Zelenka (66) dies, 22 Dec.
1746 61 Son, Wilhelm Friedemann (36), appointed organist at the Liebfrauenkirche, Halle, 16 April. Bach examines organ in Wenselskirche, Naumburg, 27 Sept.
1747 62 Visits court of Frederick the Great at Potsdam, 7-8 May, and gives organ recital in teh Heiliggeistkirche there, 8 May. Composes and published (Sept.) the Musical Offering. Joins Mizler's Society of Musical Sciences, June, for which he composes the Canonic Variations (BWV869). Bononcini (76) dies, 9 July.
1748 63
J.G. Walther (63) dies, 23 March.
1749 64 Daughter, Elisabeth Juliana Frederica (23), marries Johann Christoph Altnikol (29) in Leipzig, 20 Jan. Harrer performs Probe in Leipzig, with a view to succeeding Bach as Thomaskantor, 8 June. Cimarosa born, 17 Dec.
1750 65 Son, Johann Christoph Friedrich (18), appointed court musician at Bückeburg, Jan. Bach occupied engraving the Art of Fugue. Operated on by oculist, John Taylor, March-April. Takes final communion, 22 July, and dies, 28 July. Buried in graveyard of the Johanniskirche, 31 July. A. Marcello (66) dies;
Agricola aged 30;
Albinoni 79;
Altnikol 30;
Arne 40;
F. Benda 41;
G. Benda 28;
Boccherini 7;
Boismortier 61;
Boyce 39;
Dittersdorf 11;
Doles 35;
Fasch 62;
Gassmann 27;
Geminiani 63;
Gluck 36;
Gossec 16;
C.H. Graun c.47;
Graupner 67;
Grütry 9;
Harrer 47;
Hasse 51;
Haydn 18;
Jommelli 36;
Kirnberger 29;
J.L. Krebs 37;
Leclair 53;
Locatelli 55;
Martini 44;
L. Mozart 31;
Myslivecek 13;
Paisiello 10;
Piccinni 22;
Pisendel 63;
Porpora 64;
Quantz 53;
Rameau 67;
Sammartini c.50;
J. Stamitz 33;
Tartini 58;
Telemann 69;
Traetta 23;
Vanhal 11;
Wagenseil 35;
Weiss 64 (dies)

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