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I don't want to beat a dead horse.. But the reason why they are neglected because people in 19th-century think that they are inferior with the sonatas of Beethoven (which is bs, btw), too long (bs, again), unpianistic (bs) and too intimate. Schumann criticized the last three piano sonatas in that regard, while Brahms was fascinated with them.

It's actually Schnabel who championed the sonatas in 20th century and he was the first to play the whole D.958, D.959 and D.960 sonatas in a recital. We should be thankful to him! What a great guy..

In my part, I prefer Schubert's sonatas to Beethoven, while the last one in B-flat major is my all-time favorite piano piece..
 
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@hiltroll

I know what I'm saying..

From Wikipedia:


Furthermore, like the rest of Schubert's piano sonatas, they were mostly neglected during the entire 19th century, and have only gradually achieved public appreciation, after more than 100 years since their composition.

One of the reasons for the long period of neglect of Schubert's piano sonatas seem to be their dismissal as structurally and dramatically inferior when compared to the famous sonatas of Beethoven....

Schubert's piano sonatas seem to have been mostly neglected during the entire nineteenth century, often dismissed for being too long, lacking in formal coherence, being un-pianistic, etc.... Schumann, the last sonatas' dedicatee, reviewed the works in his Neue Zeitschrift für Musik in 1838, upon their publication. He seems to have been largely disappointed by the sonatas, criticizing their "much greater simplicity of invention" and Schubert's "voluntary renunciation of shining novelty, where he usually sets himself such high standards", and claiming the sonatas "ripple along from page to page as if without end, never in doubt as to how to continue, always musical and singable, interrupted here and there by stirrings of some vehemence which, however, are rapidly stilled". Schumann's criticism seems to fit the general negative attitude maintained towards these works during the nineteenth century.

Read more here:

The fairly lengthy article discuss how Schubert's B-flat major influenced Brahms, the championing of Schnabel, the issue of repeats, comparison with Beethoveen and etc..
 
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