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date: 05 April 2020

Senefelder, Aloislocked

  • Alec Hyatt King

Extract

(b Prague, Nov 1771; d Munich, Feb 26, 1834). Bavarian actor and playwright and the inventor of lithography. He was the son of Franz Peter Senefelder, an actor who joined the court theatre of the Elector of Bavaria in 1778. Educated first at the Munich Gymnasium and the Electoral Lyceum, he then followed his father's wishes and studied law at Ingoldstadt University; however, after his father's death he left the university and took up acting.

Even as a student he had written successful plays, and as he wrote more he sought a cheap method of printing them because letterpress and engraving were very expensive. He first experimented with etched Solnhofen stone (apparently in ignorance of the fact that this process had been in limited use since 1550) and in association with Franz Gleissner (a composer and player in the electoral band) printed some music in 1796 and early ...

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Zeitschrift für Musikwissenschaft
A.H. King: Four Hundred Years of Music Printing (London, 1964)