Music: Thorn in the Flesh

Vienna's Eduard Hanslick was the most fearless and most feared music critic of his day (1825-1904), and one of the most justly renowned of all time. Writing for the last 30 years of his career in Die Neue Freie Presse, he had contemporary subjects worthy of his talents: Franz Liszt, Clara Schumann, Anton Rubinstein, Joseph Joachim, Richard Wagner, Johannes Brahms and Giuseppe Verdi. A trained musician and respectable pianist himself, Critic Hanslick was sometimes caustic, but he was always careful. His claim was that "I never criticized a composition that I had not...

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