Bach FAQ 118
To the point: Bach's birthday is March, 31st.
Regarding Johann Sebastian Bach's day of honor: In many a publication, in particular in historic books and articles – or alternatively too – Bach's birthday is presented as the 21st of March. That, however, is the date according to the (old) Julian calendar, which was still valid in Eisenach even around the year 1750. According to our present (Gregorian) calendar, it was the 31st of March.
Just to begin with regarding this subject and real quick regarding the information above you get some background here. Whether Johann Sebastian Bach was born on March 21st or on March 31st in the year 1685, actually ... couldn't be cared less. However, the explanation above – thanks to a Bach friend for a short phrase – it really would be confusing if we read about a birth date in the middle of March here and at the end of March there., if it's about the birth date of this exceptional musician. This, however, would be too much of a good thing in many publications. Just imagine an introduction and there is a star behind the third word and this is followed by a broad explanation of that curiosity at the bottom of this book. Finally, inside the Bach science – and "Bach on Bach" is no part of that Bach science – they agreed. On the 21st of March in the year 1685. So, actually, we just follow that agreement, because it's none of the big and important secret and information. Plus we are "in line" with Christoph Wolff, professor and outstanding Bach scientist in our era, the Bach Archive in Leipzig and the Bachhaus in Eisenach.
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That is an antique postcard, probably printed in the thousands, next filled with handwritten nice words, sent, delivered, read ...
... Bach's birthday.... on the 21st of March, on the 31st of March, on the 21st of May ... who cares anyway?!
How many more compositions and heavenlike music would superstar Johann Sebastian Bach have produced, if he actually would have died as late as age 127? Plus he would have been the oldest composer on earth for eternity. And definitely, the King of Prussia plus the King of Poland would have joined to celebrate together: The 128th birthday of Johann Sebastian Bach.
Now everybody is able to discover it better. Is it one more conspiracy theory ... in the matter of Bach? Yes ... I am kidding again. However, this little misfortune above this text has actually happened.
Plus finally, where is Bach born, after we learned when he was born? The answer: in Eisenbach. Crystal clear: even the name of the birth city tells. Actually – of course – it's Eisenach. No "b", noch "... bach"! What more can I offer to answer the question "When was Bach born?"
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