Music Composers

Felix Mendelssohn-Bartoldy--Part 2

See the life of other famous musicians - see poor Schubert not being able to buy music paper to write down his inspirations and being compelled to teach reading and writing to the children of the poor for his daily bread; see poor Chopin who died in Paris "without a grave - un-knell'd, uncoffin'd and unknown!"

What a contrast to Mendelssohn, whose musical talents were carefully and systematically cultivated from early childhood, whose loving, tender parents continuously supervised his education, his development, and supplied his every want.

A Remarkable Family

Felix first saw the light in Hamburg the 3rd of February, 1809. His father, Abraham Mendelssohn, grandson of Moses Mendelssohn, the eminent philosopher, was a well-known banker in that city. Felix was the second of four children. Fanny, the oldest, then Felix, Paul and Rebecca. His mother Leah (born Salomon) had a most brilliant mind. The name Bartholdy was assumed by her brother, Consul-General Bartholdy, upon his conversion to the Christian faith. Felix's father also assumed this name. When the French entered Hamburg in 1811 the entire Mendelsohn family escaped to Berlin, where the bank founded by the father is still in existence. Abraham M. was a devout Israelite, but he permitted his children to be baptized in 1821 and educated them strictly in the Christian religion. The greatest understanding of Art and Music prevailed in his house. The education of the four children was entrusted to distinguished private teachers, Professor Heyse, the father of the poet Paul Heyse, giving lessons in general science; Berger in piano playing; Henning in violin; Zelter in theory, and Rosal in painting.

The Etude Magazine April 1920





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