Beethoven wrote his Horn Sonata op. 17 for Johann Wenzel, one of the most famous horn players of his day. According to an anecdote from Beethoven's pupil Ferdinand Ries, he only completed it on the day before the première. Nevertheless, the piece was a rousing success.
As the horn part demands a masterly technique, the publisher of the first print, Tranquillo Mollo et Comp., issued the piece in 1801 with an alternative part for violoncello. Since the autograph score has not survived, Jonathan Del Mar has based his scholarly-critical edition mainly on this first print.
Misha Donat provides an informative Foreword on the work’s history and genesis (Eng/Ger) and the edition is rounded off by a Critical Commentary (Eng) with a complete description of the sources as well as a page in facsimile.