Schumann is one of the most important composers in the Romantic period of music, furthermore, his piano works also stay in a firm position in the 19th century piano literature. Due to Schumann's enthusiasm for literature, his piano compositions are always linked to literature closely. There are three methods that Schumann used to integrate the art of literature and music: by using a poetry as a motto for an entire work, transforming the literary inspirations into his musical composition, and transferring directly from letters to notes.
Among Schumann's numerous piano works, the composition of character piece is noteworthy. The “Carnaval” is representative in this type. This work consists 21 pieces. For each piece, Schumann gives a title to describe his own duel-personalities, the features of his good friends, and the characteristics of each role from “Larventanz”. There are five chapters in this paper: the first chapter is the introduction, and in the second chapter it includes the relationship between Schumann's piano music and literature. The character pieces of Schumann will be discussed in the third chapter. The fourth chapter will focus on the compositional background and stylistic features of “Carnaval”. In the Fifth chapter, the unity of thematic materials and tonal structure of melodic frame will be discussed in details.