Hector Berlioz

 The Hector Berlioz Website

Online History of the Site

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Berlioz's Third Century

Chronological outline
Technical notes

This page is also available in French


    This personal site, a homage to Hector Berlioz, was created by Michel Austin and Monir Tayeb on 18 July 1997 as a one-page site; it subsequently grew through the addition of numerous pages and sections.

    The chronological outline below charts the development of the site year by year since its creation. In addition, three separate pages chart the progress of particular sections of the site:

    For a listing of original contributions and other articles published on the site over the years see the following pages: 


Chronological outline


18/07/1997 Foundation of the site, comprising initially a single page mainly reporting a few forthcoming concerts, news, latest CD releases and recent publications

Major pages added subsequently: 

03/12/1997 Berlioz Photo Album (reconstructed on 23/04/1998, 29/07/1999 and 22/02/2002)
12/12/1997 Berlioz and Literature (reconstructed on 29/07/1999 and 23/02/2002)
21/04/1998 Berlioz’s Birthplace – La Côte Saint-André
(reconstructed on 24 and 29/07/1999 and 17/02/2002; many revisions and additions since)
19/01/1999 You and Berlioz’s Music (in English)
04/08/1999 La ville natale de Berlioz – La Côte Saint-André  (French version of Berlioz’s Birthplace – La Côte Saint-André)
(reconstructed on 17/02/2002; many revisions and additions since)


01/01/2000 Berlioz Music Scores (see also the detailed history of this page) 
27/12/ 2000 &
Creation of many separate pages and sections including : Recent News, Diary of Forthcoming Performances, Recent Publications (completely developed in 2002 as Berlioz Bibliography), Recent Recordings (extensively developed in 2002 as Berlioz Discography), Review of Live Performances (completely reorganised on 25 December 2008), Berlioz Celebrations, and Notice Board (this last page has been discontinued)
24/06/2000 Berlioz, sa musique et vous (in French)
17/07/2000 Berlioz: Rapport sur l’Exposition de 1851 (in French)
19/10/2000 Berlioz in Paris (reorganised on 24/12/2000, enlarged on 26/06/2001, followed by several updates; a new version of this page on 15 June 2011)
20/10/2000 Berlioz à Paris (French version of Berlioz in Paris)


05/07/2001 Site moved to www.hberlioz.com and reorganised under the name The Hector Berlioz Website
20/07/2001 Online History of the Site
15/09/2001: Partitions de Berlioz – Textes et Documents (in French)
Berlioz Musical and Literary Works
09/10/2001 Berlioz Music Scores – Texts and Documents (English version of Partitions de Berlioz – Textes et Documents)
24/10/2001 Partitions de Berlioz – Extraits du Traité d’instrumentation et d’orchestration (in the original French)
02/11/2001 Berlioz Music Scores – Extracts from the Treatise on the Instrumentation and Orchestration 
(English version of  Partitions de Berlioz – Extraits du Traité d’instrumentation et d’orchestration)


01/01/2002: Berlioz in London
Berlioz: Report on the 1851 Exhibition (English translation of Berlioz: Rapport sur l’Exposition de 1851)
03/03/2002: Page d’accueil (French version of the Home Page)
Historique du Site (French version of the Online History of the Site)
08/03/2002 Berlioz à Londres (French version of Berlioz in London)
24/05/2002 Berlioz Discography
August 2002 Interview with Sir Colin Davis (by David Cairns)
15/09/2002 Berlioz Bibliography
11/12/2002 Berlioz: Predecessors and Contemporaries (see also the detailed history of this page)


01/01/2003 Berlioz Bicentenary Special – Celebrating 2003 
(a collection of invited contributions by eminent musicologists, musicians and writers on Berlioz)
13/04/2003 Berlioz Libretti
18/05/2003 A comprehensive search facility [Google] was installed on the site
11/07/2003 Berlioz in Lille  
10/08/2003 Berlioz First Editions
14/09/2003 Berlioz Cartoons
07/12/2003: Berlioz in Europe
Berlioz in Italy
Berlioz in Russia
Berlioz-inspired works of arts
Berlioz Screen Saver (discontinued from March 2017)


29/02/2004 The première of Les Troyens in November 1863
15/04/2004 Berlioz in Meylan
08/05/2004 Berlioz: Étude critique des symphonies de Beethoven 
[Berlioz: A Critical Study of the Symphonies of Beethoven]
(original French text)
11/06/2004 Hector Berlioz’s Will  
01/08/2004 Berlioz Biography
19/09/2004 Ernest Legouvé and Berlioz 
03/10/2004 Berlioz: A Critical Study of the Symphonies of Beethoven  
(English translation by Michel Austin of Berlioz: Étude critique des symphonies de Beethoven)
01/11/2004 Berlioz and his music – self-borrowings


01/01/2005 Berlioz Memorabilia
01/02/2005: Berlioz in Germany
Berlioz in Germany – Brunswick 
01/04/2005 Berlioz in Russia – Riga
01/05/2005 Berlioz’s Writings: À Travers Chants (original French text)
01/06/2005 Berlioz in Germany – Cologne
01/07/2005 Berlioz’s Writings: Les Soirées de l’Orchestre (original French text)
01/08/2005: Berlioz: A Listing of his Musical Works
Berlioz in Germany – Bonn
07/08/2005 Diary of forthcoming performances of Berlioz’s musicpurpose-built search function added
01/09/2005 Berlioz in Germany and Central Europe – Pesth
01/10/2005 Berlioz’s Writings: Les Grotesques de la Musique (original French text)
01/11/2005 A Bibliography of À Travers Chants (by Pepijn van Doesburg)
01/12/2005 Berlioz’s Writings: Memoirs (original French text)
11/12/2005 A Bibliography of Les Soirées de l’Orchestre (by Pepijn van Doesburg)
14/12/2005 A Bibliography of Les Grotesques de la Musique (by Pepijn van Doesburg)


27/01/2006 A Bibliography of Memoirs (by Pepijn van Doesburg)
01/02/2006 Berlioz: Literary texts on CD with built-in search function (discontinued from March 2017)
19/02/2006 Berlioz: Le Chef d’orchestre – théorie de son art [The Conductor  – Theory of his Art]
01/03/2006 Berlioz in Strasbourg
14/03/2006 Archive of performances of Berlioz’s music (with a purpose-built search function)
01/06/2006: Berlioz in Germany – Vienna
Berlioz und die Wiener Presse (original German)
Berlioz et la presse viennoise
(French translation by Michel Austin)
Berlioz and the Viennese Press
(English translation by Michel Austin)
03/07/2006 Berlioz in Germany – Hechingen and Löwenberg
22/07/2006 Berlioz in Germany – Gotha
01/08/2006 Berlioz in Germany – Darmstadt
01/09/2006: Berlioz in Germany – Mannheim
Berlioz in Germany – Stuttgart
01/10/2006 Berlioz in Germany – Frankfurt
01/11/2006: Berlioz in Germany – Hamburg
Berlioz in Germany – Breslau
Berlioz and France
01/12/2006: Berlioz in Germany – Hanover
Berlioz in Germany – Bremen
11/12/2006 Berlioz in Bordeaux


01/01/2007 Berlioz in Germany – Leipzig
01/02/2007: De Ontdekking van Berlioz’s ‘Messe Solennelle’ (by Werner Gladines – in Dutch)
The Discovery of Berlioz’s ‘Messe Solennelle’ (by Werner Gladines)
(English translation by Michel Austin of De Ontdekking van Berlioz’s ‘Messe Solennelle’)
La découverte de la Messe Solennelle’ de Berlioz (by Werner Gladines)
(French translation by Michel Austin of De Ontdekking van Berlioz’s ‘Messe Solennelle’)
01/03/2007 Berlioz in Germany – Dresden
01/04/2007 Berlioz in Germany – Berlin
16/05/2007 Berlioz in Germany and Central Europe –  Prague
16/06/2007: Scores not included in the New Berlioz Edition (by Pierre-René Serna)
Berlioz Music Scores – Marche d’Isly
Berlioz Music Scores – Chant des Chérubins and Pater Noster
Berlioz Music Scores – Valse chantée par le vent dans les cheminées d’un de mes châteaux en Espagne
Installation of a search facility for Berlioz’s Writings
18/07/2007 Berlioz in Belgium – Brussels
11/08/2007 The Completion of the Duo in La Nonne sanglante (by Hugh Macdonald)
01/09/2007 Index of letters of Berlioz cited
15/10/2007: Berlioz in Germany – Baden-Baden
Berlioz in Plombières-les-Bains
11/12/2007 Berlioz in Italy – reorganised and substantially enlarged


01/01/2008: Statues of Berlioz
Original contributions
Berlioz: Contemporary Performances and Articles
01/02/2008 Berlioz in Germany – Weimar
01/03/2008 Berlioz in Switzerland
01/04/2008: Berlioz and Liszt
Berlioz and Wagner
20/05/2008 Berlioz in Versailles
11/12/2008 Berlioz in Grenoble


01/01/2009: Berlioz in London – New version (considerably enlarged)
Berlioz in London: friends and acquaintances
01/03/2009 Hector Berlioz: Feuilletons – Journal des Débats 1834 - 1863 (start of a project to transcribe Berlioz’s feuilletons for this journal)
06/03/2009 Les Orages désirés – libretto by Christian Wasselin (an opera inspired by Berlioz’s youth)
20/03/2009 List of Berlioz’s feuilletons transcribed on this site (in French)
05/05/2009 Installation of a new and autonomous search engine for the whole site
15/07/2009 Rue Saint Vincent and Saint Vincent Cemetery (Paris)
01/10/2009 Berlioz in Meylan – New version
01/11/2009 Berlioz in Vienne (Isère) – New version


15/01/2010 Hector Berlioz: Mémoires d’un musicien – Le Monde Illustré 1858-1859
15/06/2010: Berlioz in Russia – New version (considerably enlarged)
Berlioz and Russia: friends and acquaintances
Octave Fouque: Berlioz en Russie (from Les Révolutionnaires de la Musique, Paris, 1882) (in French)
01/07/2010 H. Berlioz, Voyage en Russie (1847) – Magasin des Demoiselles, XII, 1855-1856 
(in the original French, with introduction in French and English)
11/12/2010: Berlioz and Lyon
Berlioz and Marseille
Berlioz and Marseille: friends and acquaintances
Auguste Morel: documents on his career (in French)


01/01/2011 Berlioz and Germany: friends and acquaintances
15/02/2011 Berlioz and Lille – New version (enlarged)
15/06/2011 Berlioz in Paris, main page – New version (enlarged)
01/10/2011 Hector Berlioz: Feuilletons – Journal des Débats 1834 - 1863
(Transcription of all the feuilletons from 1849 to 1863 completed)
15/10/2011 Ernest Reyer and Berlioz: articles (1867-1896) (in French)
20/10/2011 Auguste Morel and Berlioz (1876-1881) (in French)
15/11/2011: Paris and Berlioz: the revival (Performances of his music, 1869-1884)
Paris and Berlioz: the revival (Articles and reviews of concerts, 1869-1884) (in French)
01/12/2011: Hector Berlioz: Feuilletons – Journal des Débats 1834 - 1863
(A dedicated search function added)
Hector Berlioz: Mémoires d’un musicien – Le Monde Illustré 1858-1859
(Transcription of all the articles completed)


01/01/2012: Berlioz in Germany – Leipzig  (substantially enlarged)
Berlioz in Leipzig – A Train Journey from Leipzig to Dresden in 1843
Faust in Leipzig
05/02/2012 Site Statistics – New version
01/03/2012: Berlioz in Germany – Weimar  (substantially enlarged)
Berlioz in Weimar – Goethe and Schiller in Weimar 
Berlioz in Weimar – Berlioz’s Weimar in our time
15/03/2012: Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions
Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – David Cairns
Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Colin Davis
Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Hugh Macdonald
Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Jules-Étienne Pasdeloup
01/05/2012: Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Julien Tiersot
Julien Tiersot – “Berlioziana” series and other articles (1904-1911)
01/06/2012: Berlioz in Italy – Nice  (substantially enlarged)
Berlioz in Nice – Berlioz’s Nice in our time
15/07/2012 Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Hans von Bülow
Berlioz in Italy (numerous additions)
01/09/2012 Berlioz and Monaco
15/10/2012: Festival de l’Industrie
Cirque Olympique – New version


01/03/2013: Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Charles Lamoureux
Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Édouard Colonne
Édouard Colonne: textes et documents (1)
Édouard Colonne: textes et documents (2)
An autograph letter of Édouard Alexandre to Édouard Colonne
An autograph letter of Édouard Colonne to the Mayor of La Côte Saint-André
Document sur Édouard Colonne
01/05/2013 The Paris Conservatoire and Berlioz: 1869-1914
01/07/2013 Berlioz’s operas in France, 1869-1914
01/08/2013: Berlioz in Paris – Parc Monceau  
Berlioz in Paris – Salle Herz  (substantially enlarged)
Berlioz in Paris – Jardin du Luxembourg  (enlarged)
01/10/2013: Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Georges de Massougnes
Georges de Massougnes: BERLIOZ.  SON ŒUVRE (1870) 
(Complete transcription of the 1870 edition, together with the preface added by Massougnes’ son to the 1919 reissue of the book)
01/11/2013 Julien Tiersot – “Berlioziana” series and other articles (1904-1911
(Transcription of all the articles completed)
11/12/2013 Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Felix Mottl
11/12/2013 Felix Mottl: textes et documents


01/02/2014 Hector Berlioz: Feuilletons – Journal des Débats 1834 - 1863
(Resumption of the transcription of the remaining feuilletons written by Berlioz, i.e. from 1834 to 1848)
08/03/2014 Between 3rd February and 7 March 2014 the entire Hector Berlioz website was converted to conform to HTML 4.01 Transitional; this has involved modifications to the code of over 4200 pages of html, as well as the systematic introduction of stylesheets.
22/06/2014 Award of the Berlioz Society Medal 
In February we were awarded the Berlioz Society Medal, which we received at a meeting of the Society on 22 June 2014.
11/12/2014 Letters of the composer’s family at the Hector Berlioz Museum  
244 letters and documents from 1823 to 1878 (in French, with introduction in English)


01/02/2015 Le voyage en Italie — Le séjour à Rome (in French)
Two articles written by Michel Austin in 2012 for the catalogue of the exhibition on Hector Berlioz et l’Italie. Voyage musical at the Hector Berlioz Museum; they are reproduced on the site in a modified version.
01/04/2015 Letters of the composer’s family at the Bibliothèque nationale de France 
28 letters from 1803 to 1849 (in French, with introduction in English)
13/05/ 2015 Technical information
On 13 May 2015 all the html/htm pages of the site were converted from the windows-1252 coding to the universal standard utf-8. This involved the modification and uploading of nearly 5300 files in all.
01/10/2015 Letters of the composer at the Hector Berlioz Museum - Chronological tables
(in French, with introduction in English)
Letters of the composer at the Hector Berlioz Museum - Dating
(in French, with introduction in English)


08/03/2016 Hector Berlioz: Feuilletons – Journal des Débats 1834 - 1863 (New enlarged version)
List of Berlioz’s feuilletons transcribed on this site
(New enlarged version)
Berlioz: Feuilletons – Excerpts from the composer’s correspondence
Berlioz: Feuilletons – Notices in the Journal des Débats (New enlarged version)

The transcription of Berlioz’s feuilletons which was started in March 2009 was completed on 8 March 2016
08/03/2016 Index of letters of Berlioz cited on this site (New enlarged version)
01/08/2016 Institut de France (New version, substantially enlarged)
01/08/2016 Institut de France - Chronology


01/01/2017 The Société Philharmonique, 1850-1851
La Société Philharmonique, 1850-1851: textes et documents (in French)
01/02/2017 Concerts and performances 1825-1869
Concerts and performances 1825-1869 — texts and documents
01/04/2017 Beginning of the conversion of the entire site from HTML 4.01 Transitional to HTML 5 (<!doctype html>)
18/07/2017 Twentieth anniversary of the foundation of the site
01/10/2017 Completion of the conversion of the site from HTML4.01 Transitional to HTML5 (<!doctype html>)
01/12/2017 Théatre-Lyrique (New version, substantially enlarged)


01/01/2018 The Première of Les Troyens in November 1863 (New version, substantially enlarged)
01/01/2018 Conversion of all internal hyperlinks from absolute to relative links
15/05/2018 An autograph document of 1866 — Berlioz’s finances
01/07/2018 Tom S. Wotton, Hector Berlioz (1935), Preface and Chapters 1-6
01/08/2018 Tom S. Wotton, Hector Berlioz (1935), Chapters 7-9, Bibliography, Index (with hyperlinks)
01/09/2018 Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Tom S. Wotton
01/10/2018 Berlioz: Pioneers and Champions – Charles Malherbe
01/12/2018 Berlioz and the Americas


01/01/2019 Berlioz and the Americas – Concert programmes of the 20th century
01/02/2019 Felix Weingartner: five articles on Berlioz (translated from the German by Michel Austin)
08/03/2019 Berlioz 150: celebrations for the 150th anniversary of his death

Technical notes

    The above entries summarise year by year the additions made to the site since its creation in July 1997. These notes set out the technical means used to create and maintain the site.

    Initially we used exclusively Microsoft Windows as operating system for our computers (up to Windows 7 but not beyond). Since 2013 we have been making increasing use of other operating systems as well, especially Mac OSX (from OSX.8 [Mountain Lion] upwards), and also Linux (Linux Mint, an Ubuntu-based distribution).

    For web-editing software we used initially and for many years Microsoft FrontPage (at first FrontPage 97, then soon FrontPage 2000). This programme is convenient and easy to use, but has major flaws and is liable to generate faulty code. At first we were not aware of its limitations, but have now (July 2015) completely discontinued its use and are seeking to remedy the numerous faults it created; this involves removal or updating of code that is either faulty or obsolescent, and is a time-consuming process. We now rely primarily on Adobe Dreamweaver (Dreamweaver CS6 and also Dreamweaver CC 2015); we also make occasional use of BlueGriffon (currently version 3.01), and also of Sublime Text (versions 2 and 3), Komodo Edit, and Bluefish for editing code.

    In addition to the basic creation and editing of web pages and their code, we rely on various software programmes for special purposes: Adobe PhotoShop Elements for image editing, Sibelius for the creation of musical scores and images of them (most scores were made with versions I.4 and 3; images of scores are created with version 6), Zoom Search Engine (by Wrensoft) for all the indexing of the site (version 6). Files are uploaded to and downloaded from the server using FileZilla; other similar programmes are available.

    Initially our web pages did not use any explicit doctype declaration (this was a result of using FrontPage, which did not include any doctype declaration). In February and March 2014 we converted the entire site to Doctype 4.01 Transitional (loose), the format which approximates most closely what we had been using; the move to this doctype required numerous corrections of detail to the code (the apparent non-existence of doctype conversion software makes this kind of task difficult). In May 2015 we converted all html pages from windows-1252 coding to the universal standard utf-8.

    Though very large the structure of the site is relatively straightforward. It has been our objective from the start to make its appearance and presentation clear and simple: the site consists for the most part of pages of text, images, and tables, with a minimum of formatting. It is organised in one basic root folder with over 30 subfolders, each corresponding to one of site’s major sections or topics (archive, concerts, cities and countries visited by Berlioz, scores, writings etc.). The site comprises at present well over 13,000 files in all, of which nearly 6,000 are html files and the rest mostly image files of various kinds (gif and jpg), plus some files with specialised functions (e.g. index files, style-sheets etc.). The total size of the site online is at present over 500 MB.

    The entire site is archived regularly every month and has been since 2005. The archive comprises both working files and files online; it is preserved on several computers, external hard disks, CDs and DVDs. The archives are kept in two different locations, and are in formats that make them readable on all three major operating systems (Windows, Mac OSX and Linux).

    In April 2017, with a view to safeguarding the long-term future of the site, we decided to begin converting it ourselves from its present doctype (HTML 4.01 Transitional), which we had adopted in March 2014 (see above), to the latest universal standard HTML 5 as defined by the World Wide Web Consortium (https://www.w3.org). This involves extensive rewriting of the code for the entire site. Some tags are now obsolete (such as the <font> tag, used to define font familiies, font sizes and colours), and have to be completely replaced. Other tags, and notably the 3 most commonly used on our website — the paragraph <p> tag for formatting text, the <img> tag for images of all kinds, and the <table> tag for all tables — continue to be used in HTML 5 but the attributes associated with them have frequently changed. For example the tag for centred text <p align="center"> now has to be rewritten as <p style="text-align:center">, and tables are now formatted not with inline attributes but mostly with internal and external sylesheets. The whole process of removing and replacing obsolete code is very time-consuming, since every single html file has to be checked individually on computer and validated online with the validation service provided by the World Wide Web Consortium (https://validator.w3.org). It will take many months to complete, but we will keep visitors to the site informed of progress. To date (1 May 2017) about 500 files have been converted out of a total of more than 5,500, including Berlioz concerts and recent news, Berlioz cartoons, Berlioz-inspired art postcards, the celebrations of Berlioz’s bicentenary in 2003 and all the nearly 400 feuilletons he wrote for the Journal des Débats between 1834 and 1863.

    (1 June 2017) A total of over 1,000 files have now been converted, including the files relating to Berlioz-inspired works of art, contemporary performances and articles, the première of Les Troyens in 1863, his travels in Europe (Belgium, Monaco and Switzerland, but not including Germany, Italy, London, and Russia), Berlioz biography, catalogues and bibliographies of his musical and literary works, first editions of his published scores, and the complete text of his four published books (Les Soirées de l’orchestre, Les Grotesques de la musique, À Travers chants, and his posthumous Mémoires).

    (1 July 2017) A total of over 1,500 files have now been converted, including all the files concerning the Archive of performances of Berlioz’s music, the Pioneers and Champions of Berlioz, the Letters of the composer’s family at the Hector Berlioz Museum, and Berlioz’s travels in Russia.

    (1 August 2017) A total of over 2,600 files have now been converted, including all the files concerning La Côte-Saint-André, Vienne (Isère) and Meylan, Berlioz Libretti and Berlioz and Literature, Berlioz Statues, Berlioz in London (including Friends and acquaintances, and his Report on the Great Exhibition in London 1851), Berlioz Predecessors and Contemporaries (but excluding the files of musical scores).

    (1 September 2017) A total of over 4,500 files have now been converted, including all the files concerning Berlioz Photo Album, Berlioz Music Scores (including Texts and Documents relating to Berlioz’s music, the excerpts from the Treatise on Instrumentation and Orchestration and the Conductor’s Art, but excluding the files containing actual musical scores), Berlioz’s travels in France, Germany and Central Europe, Berlioz Discography, Berlioz Memorabilia and Bicentenary Special, and finally the Home Page of the site and files related to it (notably Site History and Site Statistics).

    (1 October 2017) During September a further 1,000 files have been converted, including a number of autobiographical articles by Berlioz himself (in Le Monde Illustré and Le Magasin des Demoiselles), articles and studies about Berlioz, notably by Ernest Reyer (in the Journal des Débats) and the extensive series of Berlioziana by Julien Tiersot (in Le Ménestrel), and the more than 800 pages concerning Berlioz and Paris (his residential addresses, public buildings and venues, his career and activities in Paris). With one exception the conversion of the entire site to HTML5 is now complete and every single page has been validated with the validation service provided by the World Wide Web Consortium, making a total of about 5,500 pages of html. The exception mentioned concerns a group of around 500 files of musical scores which are in a proprietary format which cannot be converted to HTML5.

    (1 January 2018) All internal hyperlinks on the site have been converted from absolute to relative links. For example, depending on the location on the site of the file where the link is placed, the address of the English home page is now expressed in code more concisely either as "index.html" or as "../index.html", and no longer as the full "http://www.hberlioz.com/index.html". This change has involved rewriting the code of all html pages on the site, some 6,000 in all.

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