The first movement is a sonata that starts in cut time with a slow and grand introduction in D minor leading into D major. The woodwinds then move into the second theme in A major. This opening reflects a high-spirited Allegro, where its main theme is extensively developed.
The second movement opens with the strings playing the main theme in G major. A brief episode highlighting A minor and D minor follows, before entering into a modified main theme played by both the strings and the bassoon. This Andante movement features a simple, stately theme, and its melodic and harmonic motives create a touching and profound sound.
3 Menuetto & Trio
The minuet in the third movement is written in ternary (ABA) form and opens with an emphasis on the tonic. The trio is in B-flat major and uses the oboe and the bassoon extensively to emphasise on the relative minor. In the central trio section, the woodwinds play with some delicate work, turning the movement into a gentle piece.
The final movement is a sonata in fast tempo, with an exciting and complexly developed melody. The main tune is a Croatian folk song, which Haydn might have encountered at his old home in Eisenstadt. The symphony ends with an imposing and uplifting peroration.