Ludwig Spohr, a German composer, born in Brunswick, April 5, 1784, died in Cassel, Oct. 22, 1859. He received instruction on the violin from Maucourt, and made his debut at Brunswick at the ago of 12, playing then a concerto of his own composition. At 18 he accompanied the violinist Eck to Russia. At 19 he composed the work since published as his first violin concerto (Opus 1). At 21 he made a tour through Germany, bringing out at one of his concerts the since celebrated composer Meyerbeer. In 1805 he was appointed chapelmaster at Gotha. In 1806 he married Dorothea Scheidler the harpist, and afterward composed many pieces for the harp in connection with the violin. In 1810 he visited Italy on a concert tour, and in 1817 he undertook the directorship of the Frankfort theatre. In 1820 he visited England, and conducted there the philharmonic society's concerts. In 1821 he was appointed chapelmaster at Cassel, where he resided during the remainder of his life. He brought out there his operas Der Bcrggeist, Jessonda, and Der Alchymist, his oratorios Die letzten Dinge and Des Heilands letzte Stunden (known in the respective English versions as "The Last Judgment" and "The Crucifixion "), his symphony Die Weihe der Tone or " The Consecration of Tone," and other works.

In 1852-3 he directed the performances of his operas at the royal Italian opera house in London. In 1857 he resigned his office at Cassel. He exercised a decided influence upon the art of music both by his Violinschule (fol., Vienna, 1831) and by his compositions. Among these were nine spmphonies, eight operas, a great number of quartets and quintets for stringed instruments, and other chamber music. - See Louis Spohr's Selbstbiogrape (2 vols., Gottingen, 1862), which has been translated into English.