Franz Anton Hoffmeister was born in Rottenburg am Neckar in 1754. Although his precise date of birth is unknown, he was baptised on 27 October and was likely born a few days earlier.. When just 14 years old he arrived in Vienna to study law, but was soon so entranced by the city’s rich and varied musical life, that upon graduating, he decided to devote his life to music. By the 1780s he had become one of the city’s most popular composers, with an extensive and varied catalogue of works to his credit.

Hoffmeister’s reputation today however rests almost exclusively on his activities as a music publisher. In 1785, he established one of Vienna’s first music publishing businesses, second only to Artaria & Co which had ventured into this field only five years earlier.

As a composer Hoffmeister was highly respected by his contemporaries. This is evident from the entry in Gerber’s Neues Lexikon der Tonkünstler published around the time of his death in 1812

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