Ludwig van Beethoven’s only oratorio Christus am Ölberge (‘Christ on the Mount of Olives’) portrays Jesus’ emotional struggles in the garden of Gethsemane before being seized by soldiers and taken for crucifixion. The work has an Italianate form with recitatives, arias and choruses, and its operatic attributes show Christ as a very human figure, a dramatic precursor to the sufferings of Florestan in Beethoven’s Fidelio. The tender and beautiful Elegischer Gesang is a memorial to the young wife of one of Beethoven’s close friends.