From Classic Encyclopedia 1911
OTTO NICOLAI (1810-1849), German composer, was born on the 9th of June in Konigsberg. He studied music in Berlin and in 1833 became organist to the German embassy in Rome. There his operas Enrico II (1839) and Il Templario (1840) were produced, besides some church music, a series of songs, and a number of compositions for the pianoforte. He was subsequently appointed Hof Kapellmeister at the Berlin Opera House; and there, only two days before he died (on the 11th of March 1849), was performed his brilliant opera, The Merry Wives of Windsor, the work by which he is now remembered.