With this year marking the 250th anniversary of his birth, there'll be no shortage of material to read and hear about Ludwig van Beethoven.
This towering figure, whose influence is felt right across the classical sphere, has a real claim to be the greatest of them all.
From symphonies to sonatas, from concertos to his single opera - Fidelio - the German composer's interests spanned the spectrum.
He arrived in Vienna in his early 20s, and spent over three-and-a-half decades there, dominating the scene.
A masterful pianist, he thrilled audiences with his performances of the music of Mozart, before dazzling them with his own groundbreaking compositions.
It was the American film director Billy Wilder who with wicked wit described Austrians (of whom he was one) as brilliant people: they made the world believe that Hitler, born there, was a German and Beethoven, from Germany, was an Austrian.
He wasn't, though having spent his most successful and prolific years in the imperial metropolis, it's no huge stretch of the imagination to believe that he was.
But was he actually German? His name might suggest otherwise, van Beethoven tracing its roots to the Low Countries.
The Beethoven House in Bonn - Federal Germany's post-war capital - describes its location as the composer's birthplace, and it ranks in the Top 100 of modern Germany's most popular tourist destinations.
The museum, established in 1889 - 62 years after the composer's passing - charts Beethoven's life and boasts an impressive collection of historical manuscripts.
On show are the originals scores for the Moonlight Sonata and his Pastoral Symphony, and the last grand piano he ever owned.
There's a music room, too, for recitals on period instruments.
But there's also a Beethoven Museum in the Viennese suburb of Heiligenstadt, where it's reckoned he composed his Eroica symphony.
There's no claim that he actually hailed from Vienna, but he's buried there, and having spent more than half his life in the city, it's easy to see how Billy Wilder's tongue-in-cheek observation might have some basis in fact.
And then there's the rumour that's been doing the rounds for over 200 years, that Beethoven wasn't German at all, nor even Austrian, but actually Dutch.
In Zutphen, an old Hanseatic League town in the east of the modern-day Netherlands, there's a music museum that boasts a Beethoven exhibition.
The suggestion is that the great man was actually born there. It's said that Beethoven himself maintained that he wasn't born in 1770 at all, but in 1772.
His father, a singer, had travelled to an engagement in Zutphen with his heavily pregnant wife.
While they were there, she had given birth to a baby boy in De Fransche Tuin, a guest house in the town.
Two years before, an elder son had been born in Bonn.
He had been christened Ludwig, but had died in infancy. The child they'd had in Zutphen was also called Ludwig. The story goes that, somehow or other, it was the first boy's baptismal certificate that became associated with Ludwig who'd go on to become one of the greatest composers the world has ever known.
But, reported the Bonn newspaper the General-Anzeiger: "It's all rubbish!"
The head of archives at the Beethoven House in Bonn dismissed any notion that the certificate noting December 17, 1770 as the date of the composer's baptism was in any way inaccurate. His date of birth is uncertain, but it's assumed to have been the day before, in keeping with the custom of the time. There's just too much biographical detail in the museum in Bonn to lend the story any credence. It's a good yarn, nonetheless.