So, I'm doing another Beethoven analysis, this time using the Liszt transcription of Beethoven's Fifth so that I can more easily see the harmonies and form. I am analyzing it passage by passage, first for the harmonies, and then for the form. I know, Beethoven's Fifth has been analyzed many times before. But most analyses I see of this symphony focus on how every movement is based on the Fate Motif rhythmically and/or melodically, how the Fate Motif is the one thing uniting all the movements, Beethoven's orchestration choices, and how from the first movement to the third movement, the C major finale is foreshadowed.
I rarely see a harmonic analysis of it and even more rarely do I see a formal analysis of this piece that goes into the phrasing and cadences. I'm focusing on the harmony and form of the piece. I thought the harmonies would be relatively simple to analyze. But early on, before I even reach the second theme, I am unsure how to analyze this passage circled in red:
I see two harmonies coexisting here, vii°7 and V7, with brief glimpses of the C minor tonic separating the 2 phrases from each other and from the next phrase. This and the way it is written makes me unsure how to analyze this passage.
Analyzing as vii°7
This works very well for the first 3 measures of the passage, where Beethoven is arpeggiating vii°7 using the Fate Motif. However, this means analyzing the G as a pedal point in the next measure, which I'm pretty sure isn't correct.
Analyzing as V7
This works better for the fourth measure of the passage, because the G isn't a pedal point here, unlike the C several measures later which is a pedal point. But then, what is the Ab in the first measure of the passage doing? It can't be a suspension, because it doesn't resolve anywhere, it simply leaps down a third to F. If I were to treat it as a suspension, it would have to be a 9-8 suspension without the resolution note G, which just does not sound right. Would it be an unprepared appogiatura? Would it be part of the F minor harmony right before this passage? The Ab in the third measure of the passage though is clearly a re-articulated 9-8 suspension if you analyze the harmony as V7.
You see what I mean? V7 makes total sense for the second, third, and fourth measures of the passage. vii°7 makes total sense for the first, second, and third measures of the passage. They each have 1 measure where a certain note that would have to be a non-chord tone doesn't make sense with the harmony and melody combined. For vii°7, that is G as a pedal point. For V7, that is the first Ab being a 9-8 suspension without the resolution note.
So, if each of the coexisting harmonies have 1 measure where a non-chord tone doesn't make sense with the harmony and melody combined and have 2 measures of overlap where both harmonies make sense, how should I analyze the harmony in this passage? As vii°7 to match with the arpeggiation? As V7 to match with the fourth measure of the passage? As vii°7 in the first 3 measures followed by V7 in the fourth measure?