To whom did Beethoven address this song cycle An die ferne Geliebte (To the Distant Beloved), which he completed at the age of 45 in April 1816?Was it to the same person, to whom his passionate letter to the Immorta l Beloved had already been dedicated in 1812? The source of Beethoven's song text is also shrouded in mystery. We only know the poet's name: Alois Jeitteles, a budding doctor and writer, about whose relationship withBeethoven we have no details. Whatever else, these songs provide a movi ng insight into the composer's inner state, as he managed to find new creative strength after a difficult year. The cycle has been edited by Helga L_hning (Beethoven-Haus Bonn), who illuminates our single edition in a competent preface.