The ancient sources, Polybius and Diodorus say that this claim was false and that he and his sister Laodice VI were really natives of Smyrna of humble origin. Polybius mentions that Attalus II and Demetrius I also met with the Senate at this time but does not state how this was connected to the recognition of Alexander - if at all. After recruiting mercenaries, Alexander and Heracleides departed to Ephesus. From there, they invaded Phoenicia by sea, seizing Ptolemais Akko. The coinage also presented Alexander Balas in the guise of Alexander the Great , with pronounced facial features and long flowing hair.
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Deutsch The late s produced from Handel a quartet of oratorios with distinctly militaristic overtones. Handel had started writing Judas Maccabaeus during the autumn of , but temporarily shelved the work to compose The Occasional Oratorio.
First performed in London in February , The Occasional Oratorio was written to stir English hearts at a time when there was a very real possibility that Bonnie Prince Charlie might seize the English throne.
Handel completed Judas in the summer of but its first performance was not held until April ; it was a great success.
Buoyed by his return to popularity, and with his bank account once again replenished, Handel started looking towards the next season. He commissioned two more libretti from the author of Judas, the Reverend Thomas Morell: both took as their subject matter warlike and splendidly bloodthirsty episodes in Old Testament history.
Although Alexander Balus was completed first by Handel composition was commenced on 1 June and completed on 4 July , Joshua written from 19 July to 19 August was in the event heard first by the Covent Garden audience, being premiered on 9 March Alexander Balus was first performed on 23 March, and repeated twice more in the season. And as to the last Air, I cannot help telling you, that, when Mr Handell first read it, he cried out D—n your Iambics.
There is another frequently-told story, this time recounted by John Taylor and in all probability apocryphal.
The doctor went to the window and spoke to Handel, who would not leave his carriage. Handel was at the time composing an oratorio. The doctor, after laughing at so ludicrous a reason for disturbing him, told him that billow meant wave, a wave of the sea. From a dramatic point of view it is interesting to return to this Apocryphal text to see how Morell condenses and colours up the original story.
The action takes place in Ptolomais in —bc. King Demetrius of Syria, who has previously taken large tracts of Jewish land, has attempted to make a pact of friendship with Jonathan, the leader of the Jews since the death of Judas Maccabaeus. Demetrius also tries to make a pact with Alexander, offering him and his people many concessions. In battle Demetrius is slain; Alexander seizes the throne, and recovers the lands that had been taken.
The marriage takes place. Jonathan has great success in a series of battles, including sacking the city of Azotus, and burning the temple of Dagon: Alexander is well pleased. He goes back on his word to Alexander, and offers his hapless daughter Cleopatra to the new King of Syria also called Demetrius. The sides commanded by Ptolomee and Alexander meet in battle: Alexander is defeated, and flees into Arabia.
Alexander returns from battle in triumph: first woodwind, then trumpets and timpani, then the horns and finally the chorus of Asiates rejoice splendidly at the conquest over Demetrius.
Alexander promises to be fair to the defeated Syrians and professes friendship, familial and political, with his brother Jonathan. From within this effervescent pool of sound he employs a wonderfully imaginative variety of smaller groupings. As well as employing solo oboe and concertino violin, Handel divides the upper strings into four parts to create an especially rich string texture.
His prayers are answered, for Jonathan brings the news not only that has Ptolomee has agreed to the marriage, but also that Cleopatra is waiting at Ptolomais. Stupid or not, he must have enjoyed a remarkably agile vocal technique. Aspasia attempts to persuade her friend that Alexander is not only a good match, but also a good monarch. Jonathan breaks the bad news that a series of Syrian towns have welcomed Ptolomee as a friend, but that the Egyptian King has then taken control of each city in turn.
Alexander is more worried about the disappearance of Cleopatra, and it is Aspasia who reveals the story of the break-in and kidnap. Here again, and wonderfully expressively, Handel is back in the opera house. Ptolomee now tries to persuade his daughter that Alexander has been false to her. She will have none of it, and in her melancholy we are given another preview of the impending tragedy to come. A messenger enters to tell her not only that has Alexander been defeated in battle, but also that after fleeing to Arabia he has been executed.
Another messenger enters: Ptolomee too is dead, slaughtered in battle. Over understated, separated string chords, Cleopatra weaves a magically simple line: the vocal melody, the descending bass line and the plangent harmony of the final twelve bars would not go amiss in Elgar. After such an extraordinary scene Jonathan is left to wind up the story, reminding the living that those who trust in other than the true God will always meet their fate.
The changes have caused some confusion in editions, providing for alternative versions of arias and two sets of notes in several recitatives. Haendel composait alors un oratorio. Le mariage eut lieu. De cet effervescent fond sonore, il extrait et utilise un ensemble merveilleusement imaginatif de groupements moindres. Juni bis zum 4. Juli , bekam das Publikum in Covent Garden Joshua geschrieben zwischen dem Juli und dem Die Handlung spielt — vor Christi Geburt in Ptolomaios.
Die Hochzeit findet statt. Dieser sprudelnden Klangquelle entspringt eine wunderbar einfallsreiche Vielfalt an kleineren Gruppierungen. Cleopatra fragt ihre Vertraute, Aspasia, nach deren Meinung.
Jonathan fragt Alexander, warum dieser besorgt ist. Nachdem er die Ursache richtig geraten hat, empfiehlt er seinem Bruder, bei Ptolomee um die Hand von Cleopatra anzuhalten. AKT—Der 2. Ein weiterer Bote tritt ein: Ptolomee ist ebenfalls tot, auf dem Schlachtfeld niedergestreckt.
Alexander Balus, HWV 65 (Handel, George Frideric)