Good things take time. According to his own words, Johannes Brahms had already composed over twenty string quartets (and destroyed them all) when he began work on the C minor Quartet op. 51/1. But this expressive, motivically rigorous quartet was also the result of years of effort. Robert Schumann also had a hard time with the supreme discipline of chamber music: "I have started two quartets - I can tell you, as good as Haydn," he announced to his Clara in June 1839 - and then three years later took a completely new approach for his A minor Quartet op. 41/1. Only Joseph Haydn, the "father" of the string quartet, could have been more impartial. His C major quartet op. 20/2 impresses with incredible compositional variety and tonal delicacy.