The name Ries was connected with music in Bonn from 1747, the year Ferdinand's grandfather, Johann Ries (1723-1784), was appointed court trumpeter to the Elector of Cologne at Bonn. Ferdinand's aunt, Anna Maria, was a singer at the electoral court, and his father, Franz Anton Ries, was renowned as a child prodigy on the violin, competent enough to join the court orchestra at the age of 11.

Ferdinand Ries is the most celebrated member of the family, and is remembered today largely because of his close acquaintance with Beethoven, who had studied music with Ferdinand's father.



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