On February 28 Beethoven writes to Ferdinand Ries in London.
Vienna, February 28, 1816.
. . . For some time I have not been well ; my brother’s death has affected my spirits and my compositions. I am much pained at the news of Salomon’s death, as he was a noble man whom I remember from my childhood. You have become executor to the will, and at the same time I have become the guardian of my poor dead brother’s child. It is hardly possible that you will have had as much trouble as I have had through this death. Yet I have the sweet consolation of having saved a poor innocent child from the hands of an unworthy mother.
Farewell, dear Ries ! If I can be of any service to you here, look upon me as yourmost faithful friend,