Brahms wrote this piano sonata in Hamburg, Germany in 1852, and published it the following year. Despite being his second published work, it was actually composed before his first piano sonata, but was published later because Brahms recognized the importance of an inaugural publication and felt that the in C Major sonata was of higher quality. It was sent along with his first sonata to Breitkopf and Härtel with a letter of recommendation from Robert Schumann. Schumann had already praised Brahms enthusiastically, and the sonata shows signs of an effort to impress, with its technical demands and highly dramatic nature. It was dedicated to Clara Schumann.