Henry Theophilus Finck
Finck (1854-1926) was an American writer and music critic who was a leading promotor in the United States of Richard Wagner and his musical theories. Born in Bethel, Missouri, and raised in Portland, Oregon, he was taught piano and violoncello and instructed himself in Latin and Greek so thoroughly that he was able to enter Harvard as a sophomore in 1872 where he studied philosophy, the classics and music, graduating in 1876. In that year he attended the Bayreuth Festival, writing accounts for newspapers and magazines. Having been awarded the Harris fellowship from Harvard, he spent three years from 1878-81 in the study pf physiological psychology in Berlin, Heidelberg and Vienna. Upon his return to the US in 1881 he became musical editor of the New York Evening Post and was on the editorial staff of the associated journal The Nation, remaining connected with both for 40 years. While at The Post he also served as the epicurean editor and reviewed all the new garden books. This work, subtitled 'Their Development, Causal Relations, Historic and National Peculiarities', was first published in 1887 and is reprinted from an edition of 1903.