|Year of birth||1809|
|Year of death||1847|
Although he was born nearly 40 years after Beethoven, Mendelssohn's music also spans the transition from classical to romantic. He had great ability to create romantic mood, though his music is rarely sentimental and always tempered by awareness of the classical tradition that preceded him. Mendelssohn's music was immensely popular in Victorian England; his Italian and Scottish symphonies, the Violin Concerto and the incidental music to A Midsummer Night's Dream are still among the most frequently played. Lovers of chamber music rank his work highly, with his best works on a par with those of Haydn and Beethoven.
Like Mozart, Mendelssohn was a child prodigy: he played his first public concert at nine years old. His string Octet, written at age 16, is a work of extraordinary maturity. Unlike Mozart, he was born into a wealthy family, and given the best education that could be found. The most notable event of his early years was his family's conversion to Christianity (in which his name changed to Mendelssohn Bartholdy, which often appears today on recordings and concert listings). He seems to have been a charming man unspoilt by the family wealth: he worked prodigiously hard, and his scores show meticulous attention to detail.