In it's whole, the Well-Tempered Clavier delves into some of the most complicated and compelling counterpoint ever written. For example, the piece that ends the cycle of Book 1, the great B-Minor Fugue, is so chromatic and convoluted that it shocks the modern ear with its complexity. At the start of the cycle, however, Bach bluffs us with "simplicity". The C-Major Prelude, famous for its naive beauty, and for the fact that nearly every piano student takes a crack at it sometime in their studies, is actually an almost ironic outlier in a collection of polyphonic works. It is not immediately polyphonic (though it can be strongly argued that there are indeed five voices from start to finish), and it is even devoid of a theme. At first glance it is nothing but a series of arpeggiated chords around a nice, but not especially daring, harmonic progression in C Major. The subtle beauty of the music is undeniable, though, and it stands out through the whole of music history as distinctly recognisable and endearing, which is an excellent way to start off the monumental achievement of The Well-Tempered Clavier.