The Personification of Music is singing the Terzette 'Soll ich dich, Teurer, nicht mehr sehn?' (Act II:19) from Mozart's last, and most ambitious, opera, The Magic Flute. Surrounded by Masonic priests Pamina is brought to Tamino to say farewell before he embarks on his last two ordeals before he will be admitted in the Temple of Wisdom. Fearing for his life on those dangerous tests she expresses her unconditional love for him.
Written in Mozart's native language, the opera, first performed in Vienna in 1791, immediately became enormously popular in German-speaking countries. The present picture, which can be dated towards the end of the eighteenth century, is therefore a rare contemporary demonstration of Die Zauberflöte's rapid establishment as a centrepiece of period Germanic culture.
We are grateful to Dr. Marianne Heinz for confirming the attribution on the basis of transparencies.