18th and 19th Century Musicians on Key Color
Funereal melancholy, Hawkins, 1776 Deep depression, funereal lament, Schubert, 1784; Weikert, 1827 Extreme expression of grief, Knecht, 1792 Deep depression, longing for the grave, Gathy, 1835
Gloomy and terrible, Charpentier, 1692 Mournful songs, Rameau, 1722 Preparation for suicide sounds in this key, Schubert, 1784
Of Equal temperament Charles Earl Stanhope (1753-1816) writes:
By the scheme of Equal Temperament, not only every third is sharp, but is equally sharp; every fourth is sharp, and also equally sharp, and every quint (fifth) is flat, and is equally flat. Therefore, not only every major key is rendered imperfect, but is rendered similarly and equally imperfect. This of course destroys the difference of character which ought to exist, in a well tuned instrument, between the different major keys. And the minor keys are liable to the same defect , for a similar reason.